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GEM 


HISTORY  OF 

Yolo  County 

CALIFORNIA 


Biographical  Sketches 


The  Leading   Men    and   Wome>i    of   the   County    Who   Have   Been 

Identified  With  Its  Growth  and  Development  From 

the    Early   Days    to    the   Present 


HISTORY    BY 

TOM    GREGORY 

AND    OTHER    WELL 
KNOWN    WRITERS 


ILLUSTRATED 
COMPLETE   IN   ONE    VOLUME 


HISTORIC  RECORD  COMPANY 

LOS   ANGELES,    CALIFORNIA 
[1913] 


CONTENTS 


CHAPTER    I. 

Between  the  River  and  the  Range 5 

First  View  of  Yolo — Early  Dweller  in  Tule  Town— Red  Headed  Grand 
Island  Bucks — The  Spanish  Come  Up  the  Rio — Names  Appear. 

CHAPTER    II. 

Through  a  Slumber  Period 9 

Before  the  Gringos  Came — A  History-Making  Smith — Alexander  McLeod, 
Not  McCloud — Cached  Their  Pelts  by  the  Creek — Chief  Solano. 

CHAPTER  III. 
A  Mild  Land — A  Mild  Indian 11 

When  Lo  Was  the  Adobe  Architect  and  Builder — Tribes  of  the  Sonoma 
District  Before  the  Plague— California  Red  People  That  Passed  and  Left 
No  Memory. 

CHAPTER    IV. 

The  Fair  Amazon  Califa 14 

Spain  in  Her  Mad  Dance  of  Death — A  Golden  Story — They  Tell  the 
Rosary  of  the  Missions — Carlos  and  His  Mighty  Dominions — Playing  at 
State  in  Manana  Land. 

CHAPTER   V. 

Spain  Mothered  Her  Simple  People 18 

The  Don  and  His  Childish  Pensioners — No  Horde  of  Officials — No  Pon- 
derous Judiciary — Mild  Priestly  Regulations — All  the  World  Loves  the 
Spanish  Girl. 

CHAPTER    VI. 

Alta  California  Drifts  to  Uncle  Samuel 22* 

Boys  Early  Taught  to  Ride — Dandy  Centaurs  of  the  Rancho  Ranges — 
Mother  Mexico  and  Her  Disobedient  and  Disrespectful  Daughter — The 
Yankees  Wrangle  Over  the  "Admission." 

CHAPTER    VII. 
Prom  San  Diego  to  the  Yolo  Plain 25 

The  Great  Valley  in  the  Roaring  Forties— Uncle  Billy  Gordon  Reaches 
Cache  Creek— They  All  Live  in  Clover— The  Landing  of  William  Knight- 
Hair  Trigger  Touchiness— In  the  Tulares — Tinker's  Great  Fight. 

CHAPTER  VIII. 

Staking  Hit  the  Tule  Cities ;i'» 

The  Lost  Knight  Rancho — The  Berryesses'  Fleeting  Acres— Kelsey  Hodoo 
That  Followed  That  Wandering  Family — Pioneer  Wheat  Patch— Wash- 
ington. 

CHAPTER     IX. 

Recruiting  the  Bear  Flag  Party 33 

The    Rearing    of    the    California    Republic— Fremont,    the    Pathfinder— 


v i  CONTEXTS 

Vallejo — El  Oso  Waves  Over  Sonoma — Then  the  Stars  and  Stripes  Went 
Aloft   for  All   Time. 

CHAPTER    X. 

Jonas  Spect  and  His  River  Metropolis — - 36 

All  Roads  Went  to  Fremont  City  at  the  "Forks"— Everybody  Had  Plenty 
of  "Sand" — On  the  Highway  to  the  Mines  and  Wealth — Constitutional 
Government. 

CHAPTER    XI. 
Mapping  Out  the  Tule  County 39 

The  Humor  of  the  Colusa  "Scratchers"— The  County  Seat  Was  Fremont 
at  the  Forks— Early  Election  Campaigns— The  County  Grows  Apace— On 
the   Pioneer   Tax   Rolls. 

CHAPTER    XII. 

Settling  Along  the  Big  Sacramento 43 

Murphy  in  the  Toils  of  a  Fierce  Law— Rounding  Up  the  Cattle  Thieves— 
In  the  Livestock  Days — The  Padres  Farmed  a  Little — Wool  Shirts  Made 
the  Red  Convert  More  Lousy  and  Mucho  Itchy. 

CHAPTER  XIII. 
When  the  Mustang  Galloped  Out  up  the  Twilight..... -±7 


Here's  to  You,  Tough  Bronco! — The  Dairy  Queen  From  Over  the  Seas — 
Useful  Though  Homely  Hybrid  Mule— The  Yolo  Horse  Industry— Beef 
and   Butter  Business — Floods  Wash  Out  the  River  Ranches. 

CHAPTER    XIV. 

Passing  of  the  City  op  the  Two  Rivers - 50 

Leaves  from  Early  County  Records — A  County  Seat  That  Flew  by  Night 
—Woodland  Is  Born  Under  Her  Grand  Trees— They  First  Called  the 
Town  "Yolo  City" — She  Gets  the  Fleeting  County  Seat  and  the  News- 
papers Came  Also. 

CHAPTER    XV. 

Planting  the  Yolo  Valley  Settlements - 54 

In  the  Rich  Vale  of  the  Capay — What  the  Railroads  Did — Theodore  Win- 
ters Builded  Well — The  Town  "Dry"  and  Prosperous — Dunnigan  and  His 
Town— Black's  Station — Along  the  River  Front— When  Knights  Landing 
Was    Baltimore. 

CHAPTER    XVI. 

Jerome  Davis  and  Davisville iin 

Farmers  Made  Scientifically — The  Rich  Alluvium  from  the  Hills — Reser- 
vations of  Fertility  in  the  Sinks  of  Cache  and  Putah  Creeks — The  Warm 
Grape  Loam — Alfalfa  the  Busiest  Plant  on  Earth — The  Sugary  Beets  and 
Grapes  of  Yolo — A  Few  Fruit  Figures. 

CHAPTER    XVII. 

Yolo  County's   Splendid   Promise.. 64 

Some  Large  Ranches — The  Valley  of  the  Sacramento  a  Water  Basin — 
How  the  Flood  Came  Down  in  "Fifty" — A  Furious  Tidal  Wave — Winter 
of  Fifty-Two  and  Three— Sacramento  City  and  the  Deluge  of  Sixty-Two— 
Over  the  Yolo  Plains — The  Tribute  of  the  River — Reclamation  and  Irriga- 
tion— Dream   of  the   Yolo  Rancher. 

CHARTER    XVIII. 

Commercial  History  of  Yolo  County 7:i 

Began    With    1S69 — Incorporation    of    Bank    of   Woodland — Beginning   of 


17^9173 


CONTEXTS 

First  Railroad— Wheat-Raising  and  Stock-Raising— Pioneers  of  Yolo 
County — Need  of  a  Local  Bank— Bank  of  Woodland  Organized — Business 
Progresses — Present-Day  Conditions. 

CHAPTER    XIX. 

Fremont  

Earliest  Settlement  in  the  County — Jonas  Spect  and  His  Speculation — 
Population  of  Town  Increases— First  School— Fremont  Made  the  County 
Seat— Its    Short    Life. 

CHAPTEE    XX. 
Washington  - ~ 

Washington  Profits  by  the  Dissolution  of  Fremont — The  First  Settler  and 
Those  Who  Followed — Population  Continues  to  Grow— Progress  Along 
All  Lines— Floods  Bring  Disaster — Political  Events— County  Seat  Re- 
moved to  Woodland— Reclamation  Undertakings. 

CHAPTER    XXI. 

Woodland     — 

Its  Splendid  Location— Henry  Wyckoff.  Its  Founder— Settlers  Who  Fol- 
lowed and  What  They  Accomplished— Naming  the  Town— The  Only  Sur- 
vivor of  the   Early   Pioneeis. 

CHAPTER    XXII. 

Woodland  Becomes  the  County  Seat 

Has  Been  the  Seat  of  Government  Since  1862 — An  Era  of  Prosperity — 
First  Plat  of  Town  Recorded — Cornerstone  of  Courthouse  Laid — First 
Newspaper. 

CHAPTER    XXIII. 

Other  Early  Enterprises : 

Newspaper  of  Early  Days — Fire  Department — Fraternal  Bodies — National 
Guard. 

CHAPTER    XXIV. 
A  Period  of  Depression 


Woodland  Feels  the  Stress  of  Hard  Times— Woodland's  First  Street  Car 
— Coming  of  the  Telephone  and  Electricity — The  Woodland  Creamery — 
Municipal   Building  Erected. 


CHAPTER    XXV. 
A  Period  op  Disaster 


Woodland  Chamber  of  Commerce — Severe  Snowstorm  of  1S90 — The  First 
Fair— Bonding  of  Town— Site  Selected  for  City  Hall— Disastrous  Fire  of 
1891 — Woodland  Fair  Association — Earthquake  and  Fire  of  1892 — Depres- 
sion of  the  Three  Years  Following — Famous  Worden  Case — Wine  Indus- 
try— Woodland  Athletic  Club — Yolo  Consolidated  Water  Company. 


CHAPTER    XXVI. 
Period  of  Marked   Activity 


The  Year  1902  Sees  Further  Progress  in  Irrigation  Facilities — Improve- 
ment in  Postal  Service — Carnegie  Library  Erected — Other  Notable  Im- 
provements— Disastrous  Fire  of  1905 — Notable  Improvements  of  Later 
Years. 


CHAPTER    XXVII. 

Officers  of  City  of  Woodland,  and  of  County  and  State 

Board  of  Trustees— State  and  County  Officers  for  Years   1849-1911. 


v  i  i  i  CONTENTS 

CHAPTER    XXVIII. 

Schools  of  Yolo  County 132 

The  Pioneer  Teacher  of  the  County — First  School  of  the  County — Interest- 
ing Account  of  Early  School  Days— List  of  Districts  and  Teachers— High 
Schools — Hesperian  College — Yolo  County  High  School  Districts — Uni- 
versity Farm. 

CHAPTER    XXIX. 

The  Catholic  Church  in  Yolo  County 146 

Pioneer  Catholic  Family  of  the  County — First  Resident  Priest  and  Those 
Who  Followed — First  Services  in  Davisville,  Winters,  Madison,  Blacks, 
Guinda,   Broderick — Holy   Rosary   Academy. 

CHAPTER    XXX. 
Temperance  Movement  in  Yolo  County ...155 

Institution  of  Sons  of  Temperance — Independent  Order  of  Good  Templars 
— Vote  Upon  Question  of  License  or  No-License — Organization  of  W.  C. 
T.  U. — Midnight  Closing  Ordinance — Closing  of  Saloons  in  Woodland. 

CHAPTER    XXXI. 

Woodland  Library  and  Women's  Clubs , 161 

Library  Opened  in  1874— Those  Who  Have  Labored  to  Make  the  Under- 
taking a  Success — Carnegie  Donation  Received  in  1904 — Yolo  County 
Library  Improvement  Club— Five  Club— Woodland  Study  Club— Wood- 
land  Current  Topics  Club— Mutual  Club— Fortnightly   Club. 


INDEX 


A 

Abele.   Aloi  3  H 523 

Alge,  Richard 251 

Altpeter,  John   C 439 

Anderson,   Ear!   T 4S2 

Anderson,  John  B 643 

Anderson,   John   W 60S 

Anderson,  William  A 247 

Archer,   John   T 534 

B 

Bailey,  A.  G 689 

Baird,  James   D 620 

Baird,  Thomas    727 

Baker,  Hon.  Francis  E SOS 

Ball,  Thomas  D S77 

Barnes,  George    L 347 

Barnes,  H.    T.    &    Son 238 

Baumann,    Otto    J 829 

Beamer,  Richard    H 240 

•Beamer,  Richard     L 653 

Beardslee,  William   E.   M SS5 

Beck,  Aaron    546 

Beeman,  Dean   C 816 

Belshe,  Thomas  J 200 

Bemmerly,  Ernest   637 

Bemmerly ,  John     826 

Bentz,  M.  S 736 

Bidwell,  Charles  T 857 

Blanchard,  Prank    W 530 

Blanchard,  Melvin    W S6S 

Blickle,  Chris    F S17 

Boots,    William    A 700 

Bourland,  Francis     L 559 

Bower,  John    G 693 

Bray,  William   206 

Breen,  Miss  Agnes 460 

Brinck,  August    342 

Brinck,  William 404 

Brown,  Demarcus  X 809 

Browning,  Robert   W  .  .  ■ 211 

Browning.  William    M 739 

Buckingham,  Robert  H   193 

Byrns,  Charles    E 796 

c 

Cannedy,  William  J 339 


Cecil,   Burlin 467 

Cecil,    James    G 277 

Chapman.  James  W 450 

Chiles,  Isaac 645 

Chiles,  William  D 652 

Clancy,  Mathew 456 

Clanton,  Drewry  R 422 

Clanton,   Ethelbert    J 793 

Clark,  Hon.  Ephraim 695 

Clarke,  Foster  N 538 

Coil,  Charles   191 

Cole,   Roy   E 348 

Comontofski,    John 433 

Cook,  Elijah  A 265 

Cook,  Ephraim 56S 

Cook.    Thomas 720 

Cooper,  Charles    C 602 

Cooper.  Hickason  B 505 

Cooper.   Joseph   T 340 

Costa,    Fedele 39S 

Craig,   Joseph 372 

Craig,  Thornton,  M.  D 377 

Cramer,   Lewis 553 

Crane,    James    A 725 

Cranston,  Reuben  B 614 

Crites,   Ephraim   Q S27 

Culton,   Henry   C 187 

Culver.  Edward  W 464 

Cummins,  Thomas  D 648 

Curtiss,  Wilbur  C 743 

D 

Dahler,   William 272 

Davisson,  Benjamin  F.,  Sv 510 

Dill,  William  .1 471 

Dingle.  Charles  E 672 

Drummond,   John    C 41S 

Drummond,   Lewis   C 176 

Drummond,    M.    H 477 

Duncan.   Wyatt   G 365 

Durst,    Fredoline 846 

E 

Eddy,  Hiram  S 773 

Edson,  Frank  B 697 

Edwards,  James   R 698 

Eliot    Patrick    H 752 


Ely,  Isaac  J 400 

Evans,  Edward  J 662 

Ewert,   Fred   C 650 

F 

Parish,  Anthony  L 686 

Farnham.    Erastus    S 216 

Fenton,  Del 734 

Fingland,   John,   Jr 511 

Fish,  George    H 674 

Fishback,   Charles   M 563 

Fisher,    Isaac 775 

Fisher,   James   R 661 

Fisk.  Walter  W 864 

Fitz,    Reuben 474 

Fletcher,   Frank 81S 

Flint,  Daniel    659 

Flint.    Russell    R 804 

Flowers,  Otis  0 327 

Fredson,  Alonzo  H 748 

Freeman,  Hon.  Frank  S 173 

Freeman,  Mrs.  Gertrude 179 

Freeman,  John  W 1S5 

French,   Charles   E S42 

G 

Gable,  Amos  W 730 

Gable,  Harvey  C 733 

Gaddis.    Edward    E 597 

Gaddis,    Henry    6S3 

Gallup,  J.  Wesley 394 

Germeshausen,    Joseph 249 

Gibson,    Robert    J S59 

Gibson.   Thomas   B 299 

Gibson.   William   B 2S3 

Gilliam,   J.   W S43 

Gordon.  William  Y 874 

Grauel.  Emil  F 492 

Greene,  Charles  E 271 

Greene,  Charles  E.,  Sr 244 

Greive,   Mrs.   Jakie 88S 

Gumbinger,  Christian   545 

H 

Hadsall,  Charles  F 314 

Hall.    Thomas 485 

Hamel,   George   F 463 

Hamel,    Henry 6S7 

Hamilton.    David 257 

Hannum,  Albert  J 318 

Hansen.   H.   J 642 

Harley.  Emerson  B 677 

Harrison.    Herbert   E 823 

Hatch.    Chester    L 71 S 


Hatcher,  George  P 713 

Hawkins,  Hon.  Nicholas  A 820 

Hayes,    George 393 

Hays,   Eli 529 

Hecke,  G.  H 411 

Heinz,  Lorenz 779 

Henigan,    Hiram 318 

Henshall,  Mrs.  Mary  Dexter 222 

Hermle,    Cyriak 737 

Hershey,  David  N 333 

Hinckley,   Horace   C 640 

Hoag,    George    B 501 

Holy   Rosary   Academy 150 

Hoppin,   Charles  R 292 

Houx,  Daniel   F 844 

Howard,    Richard 472 

Hucke,   August   V 359 

Hughes,  Thomas  G 435 

Hughson,    George    W 810 

Hunt,    Alvis    G 286 

Hunt,   John    635 

Huston,  Arthur   C 234 

Huston,   Mrs.   Sarah 290 

J 

Jackson,    William    M 313 

Jacobs,   George  N 499 

Jacobs.   Isaac   W 357 

Jacobs,  James  R 837 

Jacobs.  Oscar    E 232 

Johnson.  Charles   705 

Johnson,  Henry  B S70 

Johnson.    John 728 

loyce,   Mrs.   Halcyon 699 

K 

Keehn    Brothers S63 

Keithly,   John 391 

Kettenburg,   Henry 572 

Kier,  Henry  M 667 

Kincheloe,  Z.   B 613 

King,  William   259 

Knudsen,    Peter 564 

Krellenberg,   Emil 490 

L 

LaBrie,   Napoleon   B 495 

LaRue.    Hugh    M 664 

Laugenour,   Mrs.   Emma  C 215 

Laugenour,  John  D 221 

Laugenour,  Thomas  F 710 

Lawson    Brothers 3S3 

Lawson,   John    D 630 

Lawson.  Perry  P 6su 


Lawson,    Robert    G 630 

Leake,  Ed  E 849 

Leeman,  William   H 519 

Leinberger,    Henry 537 

Lillard,  William  A (ill 

Linderman.    George    W 741 

Lipe,   Charles   W 751 

Logwood,  William  M 646 

Long,  David  H 321 

Long,  .Tames  T 633 

Luft,  John  C 346 

M 

McCoubrey,    John 763 

McCullough,  Fred  F 883 

McGarr,  P.   H 296 

McHenry,   James   M 304 

McKinney,    Robert   J 761 

McNeill,    Henry 782 

Maier,    Frank 878 

Mangold,  Rev.  John  G 682 

Marden,   William   H 691 

Marders,    H.   L 791 

Marders,  William  N 670 

Martin,    John 594 

Martin,  John  D 679 

Marty,  Antone    579 

Maxwell,   James    0 860 

Meier,   Robert   A 886 

Mezger,   Theodore 676 

Miller,   Antone    835 

Miller,    Hezekiah    M 794 

Millsap,    Walter SSO 

Monroe,    James    W 227 

Montgomery,    Alex 832 

Montgomery,  J.   C S07 

Montgomery,   William   W 805 

Morrin,  J.  M ;,i!ii 

Morris,  Asa  W S02 

Mosbacher,    Jacob 326 

Murphy,  John  J 701 

N 

Newman,   W.   V 814 

Nichols.   Carl   B 576 

Nissen,  Reuben  B 311 

Norton,  John   815 

Nutting,   Daniel   W 712 

Nutting,  Judge  Samuel  L 502 

0 

Oeste,  John   H 871 

Ogden,    George    A 421 

Ogden,  Robert  L 7S9 


Osborn.  William   E ".  .    753 

Overhouse,    William 876 

Overhouse,  William  D 639 

P 

Palm,  Edward  A 590 

Parker.  John  R 768 

Parrish,  Bernard  W 560 

Paul,  Mrs.  Jane  E 587 

Peterson,    Peter 636 

Pierce,  George  W 229 

Plant,  Albert  J 788 

Porter,   Adelbert   D 853 

Porter,  William  A 784 

Powers,  Arthur  A 801 

Pratt,  E.  D 276 

R 

Rasor,   Claire,   M.   D 756 

Read,  Walter  G 331 

Reardon,   Maurice    506 

Reasbeck.    Edward 367 

Reed,    Hayward 866 

Rehm,    Henry 834 

Reiff,  Jacob S38 

Reynolds,   William   J 605 

Rhodes,  John  M 622 

Richie,    John    D 824 

Richter  Brothers 755 

Ridley,  Edward  758 

Roach,  William  E 486 

Roberts.   Hampton   E 77S 

Robinson,    Calvin   N 542 

Rodgers,  John   T 787 

Rogers,  T.  G 261 

Rowe,  Jesse  G.,  Sr 632 

Ruberts,   Watson   M 360 

Russell,  Francis    E 447 

Russell,  William    440 

Russell,  William  O 262 

Ryder,  Thomas  H 550 

S 

Sackett,  Buel  R 415 

Sackett,  Harry   E 303 

Sanders,   George   W 512 

Sandrock,    William S40 

Saunders,  Harry  R 285 

Schaeft'er,    Franklyn    G 430 

Schlieman    Brothers 515 

Schlosser,    Gustave    E 181 

Schlotz,    Chris 266 

Schluer.    Otto    79S 

Schooling.   Oliver   B 434 


INDEX 


Schuerle,   John   K 325 

Scott,  George   W 426 

Scott.  J.    Smith 723 

Sharp.   Bernal    H 520 

Sieber,    Chris 657 

Smith,  John    H 598 

Smith,  John    J 770 

Snider,    Eli 830 

Stening.    Fred    V 593 

Stephens.   George   D 197 

Stephens.   John   D 351 

Stephens,    Joseph    J 702 

Stephens,   Lawrence   D 203 

Stites.   William  A 706 

Stoddard,    John 882 

Strippel,  H.  S 879 

Suggett,   J.    E - 872 

Swete.    Carrington   A 379 

Swingle,  George  H 799 

T 

Tadlock,  Elbert    716 

Tadlock,  Rilford   G 759 

Taylor,  James     627 

Taylor.  John    Z 715 

Thomas.  Charles  S 397 

Tufts.    J.    B 588 

V 

Van   Zee.    Dirk 746 


w 


Wallace,    Richard   P 27."". 

Waller,    Uriah    J 738 

Wallrath,   Rev.   M 617 

Weber,    Mrs.    Bertha 407 

Stitt.   Matt   H 269 

White.   William   S 606 

Wilber.  Otis  B 557 

Wilcox,    Lester    C 549 

Wilcoxon,  Caleb   R 654 

Wilger,  Frederick    856 

Wilkendoif,    August    7S6 

Wilkerson.  Mattie  L.,  D.  C 812 

Willman,   Joseph    583 

Winne.    William    H 722 

Wirth,  C.  F 708 

Witham,   Gilbert   T 478 

Wohlfrom,    John    209 

Wolgamott.  David      386 

Wolgamott,  Joseph      764 

Wood,   Mrs.j    Henry   B 408 

Wood,  Joel     638 

Wood,  John    D 449 

Wooster,    Daniel    M 489 

Wright.  William   S 527 

Wurth.   Mrs.   Gertrude 368 

Wyatt,  James   N.    B 766 

Wyatt.    Roy    F 442 

Zimmerman.   Mrs.   Marcia   E 629 


HISTORICAL 

CHAPTER    I 

HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

By  Tom  Gregory 

Between  the  river  and  the  range — is  Yolo.  This  is  not  only  a 
poetical,  but  is  a  geographical  fact,  as  the  county's  entire  eastern 
boundary  line  is  the  Rio  Sacramento  and  its  western  wall  is  a 
chain  of  the  coast  mountains;  between  is  a  great  plain  of  wonder- 
ful fertility,  and  that  is  the  topic  and  scene  of  this  work.  South 
of  Yolo  lies  Solano  and  north  is  Colusa — all  spread  west  of  the 
Sacramento  and  all  an  important  part  of  the  great  central  llano 
of  the  state.  From  the  river  to  the  crest  of  the  hill-chain  that 
cuts  Xapa  from  the  Sacramento  valley  the  average  breadth  is 
about  twenty-seven  miles,  and  the  Solano-to-Colusa  line  measures 
about  the  same  mileage.  This  does  not  mean  that  Yolo  approxi- 
mates a  27-mile-square,  because  a  large  piece  of  tule  territory 
bordering  the  river  on  the  extreme  southeast  gives  the  county 
an  irregular  shape.  The  area  is  650,880  acres,  and  with  the  west- 
ern edge  of  this  great  field  where  the  surface  lifts  up  the  moun- 
tain wall  the  country  practically  is  level,  with  a  gentle  slope  to- 
ward the  river.  Mark  how  nature  has  arranged  the  plain  and 
upland  in  relation  to  each  other.  Down  the  eastern  shed  of  this 
spur  of  coast  range  come  the  floods  of  the  rain-seasons  as  they 
have  come  for  ages,  to  spread  their  alluvial  burdens  on  the  valley 
surface  below.  High  up  in  these  mountains  is  Clear  Lake,  a 
natural  reservoir  of  water  forty  miles  in  length  with  Cache  creek 
a  natural  outlet  conducting  this  flood,  winter  and  summer,  over 
the  Yolo  levels.  A  system  of  artificial  canals  has  taken  up  the 
work  inaugurated  by  nature  and  already  eighty  or  one  hundred 
thousand  acres  are  under  irrigation. 

Irrigation  in  Yolo  county  is  not  always  necessary.  With  a 
never-failing  winter  rainfall  on  a  soil  built  up  of  centuries  of 
rich  sediment,  fair  harvests  will  yearly  appear  without  such  arti- 
ficial methods;  but  all  surrounding  conditions  being  favorable  for 
such  application  of  water  to  his  fields  the  Yolo  agriculturist  irrigates 
and  adds  to  the  output  of  his  acres  whether  they  are  producing 
grain,  alfalfa,  beets  or  fruits.  And  by  using  all  these  available 
facilities  crop  failure  is  absolutely  impossible  in  California  where 
the    droughts,    hailstorms,    uncertain    summertime    floods,    cyclones 


6  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

and  such  climatic  catastrophies  of  other  states  are  unknown.  When 
the  rancher  of  the  Capay  or  the  winter's  fruit  belt  waters  his  acres, 
whether  the  fluid  comes  by  pump  from  his  well  or  by  gravity  from 
Lake  county  in  the  hills  just  above  him,  he  utterly  eliminates  the 
uncertainties  of  the  season.  This  is  Yolo  county — between  the 
range  and  the  river — with  its  high  grazing  lands,  grain  lands,  al- 
falfa lands,  vine  lands,  orchard  lands  and  lands  for  every  vegetable- 
growth  under  sun  and  shower.  Yolo  county,  with  irrigation  on  the 
west  and  reclamation  on  the  east,  is  just  coming  into  its  own — the 
richest  spot  in  all  the  great  Sacramento  basin ;  Yolo  county  favored 
by  rainstorm  and  sunshine — where  every  creek,  winter-rivulet  or 
summer  rill  dripping  from  the  bordering  hills  is  a  Nile  sowing- 
seasons  of  fertility  over  the  plain. 

"FIRST    VIEW"    OF    YOLO 

The  "First  View"  of  Yolo  passed  away  leaving  not  an  imprint, 
not  a  record.  The  earliest  intelligent  wanderers  within  these  noble 
domains  of  the  Far  West  neglected  frequently  to  file  for  the  future 
the  stories  of  their  explorations.  Mere  hunters,  they  followed  the 
retreating  wild  game  as  it  fled  before  them  over  these  slopes  and 
streams,  and  they  though  not  of  the  grand  empire  that  was  to  be. 
With  the  quarry  they  passed,  and  their  coming  and  going  was  lost 
or  lived  only  in  legend.  The  most  primitive  Yoloan  of  white  as- 
sociation to  step  out  into  view  where  the  historian  may  get  a  line 
on  him,  is  a  Scotch  sailor,  nameless  here  forevermore,  who  jumped 
his  ship  in  Yerba  Buena,  drifted  up  the  Rio  Jesu  y  Maria  to  Grand 
Island,  took  apartments  in  a  rancheria,  wedded  a  squaw — and  there 
is  a  gap  in  the  story  twenty-five  years  wide.  In  1841,  or  there- 
abouts, William  Gordon,  with  his  party  from  New  Mexico,  became 
the  first  authentic  white  settler  of  what  is  now  Yolo  county.  How- 
ever, Uncle  Billy — as  he  was  long  afterward  known  among  his 
neighbors  of  Napa,  Solano,  Lake,  Yolo  and  Colusa  counties — may 
be  holding  a  clouded  title,  as  he  found  among  the  Indians  along 
the  river  several  red-headed  half-breeds.  They  were  lusty  bucks 
of  an  adult  age  and  their  story  as  well  as  their  skins  and  tresses 
proved  them  to  be  the  grown-up  pappooses  of  Sailor  Scotty  and 
his  Grand  Island  squaw.  With  this  instant  and  faint  appearance 
the  near-pioneer  Caledonian  fades  and  even  the  white  blood  in  his 
hybrids,  growing  more  ruddy  as  the  generations  pass,  is  finally  lost 
in  the  red  pool  of  the  Indian. 

EARLY    DWELLER    IN    TULE    TOWN 

It  must  have  been  in  1818-20  when  this  early  sailor  became  a 
dweller  of  the  Tules,  the  first  white  citizen  of  "Yoloy"  or  "Toloy- 
toy,"  as  the  Indians  finally  called  it;  "Pueblo  del  Tule,"  according 
to  the  Spanish,  or  "Rushtown,"  as  the  Gringo  named  it.  What- 
ever the  most  fitting  title,  the  place  represented  leagues  of  rich  soil 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  7 

along  the  west  bank  of  the  Sacramento  bordered  by  the  great  fields 
of  tules  that  gave  Yolo  county  a  name.  In  1818  Burchard,  a  French- 
man in  the  service  of  Buenos  Ayres,  appeared  on  the  coast  with  his 
two  ships.  He  robbed  the  ports,  drank  the  padres'  wine  from  Mon- 
terey to  San  Diego  and  occasionally  burned  the  towns  when  the 
inhabitants  objected  to  his  manners.  In  most  every  place  of  call 
he  left  deserters,  one  of  whom  was  Joseph  Chapman  of  Boston, 
the  first  American  resident  in  California,  and  the  Grand  Island 
white  man  may  have  been  one  of  Burchard 's  jolly  pirates  who 
exchanged  the  storms  of  the  sea  for  the  calms  of  a  Sacramento 
tule  shack.    Quien  sabe? 

THE    SPANISH    UP   THE   RIVER 

During  this  period — 1820 — Sola  was  the  Spanish  governor  of 
California,  but  a  revolution  in  Mexico  was  jarring  Spain  off  the 
North  American  continent  forever.  This  revolution  had  been 
going  on — off  and  on — for  ten  years,  but  the  Californians,  though 
maintaining  a  loyalty  to  the  Spanish  took  little  interest  in  the 
progress  of  the  conflict.  Finally  the  fight  was  won  by  the  Mexi- 
can patriots.  Gen.  Agustin  Iturbide,  who  was  sent  with  a  royalist 
army  to  suppress  Guerrero,  the  last  rebel  chieftain,  instead  joined 
the  insurgents.  The  combined  forces  entered  the  capital  city 
and  Iturbide  was  proclaimed  emperor  of  Mexico.  In  a  few  months 
the  emperor  was  dethroned  and  finally  shot,  and  Mexico  became  a 
republic.  Governor  Sola  of  California  had  officially  started  out 
as  the  subject  of  a  kingdom,  and  when  the  empire  came  along  it 
was  a  bitter  pill,  but  he  swallowed  it  and  hoisted  over  Monterey  the 
imperial  flag  of  Mexico.  But  the  coming  of  a  republic  was  too 
much — and  all  three  of  these  changes  within  a  year — and  he  re- 
signed, being  succeeded  by  Luis  Antonio  Arguello,  the  first  repub- 
lican (Mexican)  governor  of  California.  But  one  of  Sola's  last 
official  acts  (1821)  was  to  send  an  expedition  to  explore  the -north- 
ern portion  of  the  territory.  This  party,  under  the  command  of 
Arguello — then  only  president  of  the  provincial  council — threaded 
the  bays  above  Yerba  Buena  and  passed  up  the  large  river  which 
they  called  El  Rio  Jesu  y  Maria.  The  explorers  continued  up  the 
splendid  stream  they  had  found.  The  water  was  clear  and  deep 
with  high  wooded  shores,  the  white  miner  not  having  come  to  fill 
the  noble  natural  canal  with  the  mud-debris  of  the  mineral  hills, 
and  the  great  fertile  llano  stretching  away  on  both  sides.  Coman- 
dante  Arguello  was  a  native  son  of  California,  having  been  born 
in  Yerba  Buena  in  1784  while  his  father  was  an  officer  in  the 
presidio  of  that  port.  In  fact,  he  was  the  military  commander  of 
San  Francisco  while  exploring  the  Sacramentoan  valley  and  after- 
wards was  the  first  native-born  governor  of  the  state,  under  Mex- 
ican rule.     He  was  self-made,  an  industrious   student  when  books 


8  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

and  schools  were  scarce  and  a  man  of  excellent  character  and  is 
probably  the  first  pioneer  of  this  far  west.  He  continued  his  ex- 
plorations as  far  north  as  the  Oregon  line,  turned  west  to  the  coast, 
and  returned  to  Yerba  Buena  through  the  Russian  river  valley. 
Comandante  Argnello  had  closely  observed  the  grand  agricultural 
possibilities  of  the  Sacramento  river  basin,  the  well-watered  plain 
possessing  everything  needed  by  the  colonist.  It  was  largely 
through  the  interest  awakened  by  this  exploration  that  moved  the 
slow-going  Mexican  Congress  in  1824  to  pass  a  general  coloniza- 
tion act — suddenly  breaking  away  from  the  ancient  Spanish  exclu- 
siveness  regarding  alien  immigration.  Governors  of  territories 
were  authorized  to  grant  vacant  lands  in  limited  amounts  to  citizens, 
whether  Mexican  or  foreign  born,  who  properly  petitioned  for 
them  and  engaged  to  cultivate  and  inhabit  them.  Other  travelers 
within  this  region  began  to  make  the  heretofore  terra  incognita 
a  somewhat  known  territory. 

NAMES    BEGAN    TO    APPEAR 

The  rude  maps  began  to  show  names  now  household  titles  in 
the  state  geographies.  Sacramento — from  their  holy  sacrament — 
was  a  name  easier  to  handle  than  was  the  original  title ;  the  present 
Feather  river  was  first  called  by  the  Spanish — Plumas,  which  was 
prettier  than  its  Y'ankee  translation.  The  surveyors  found  a  pretty 
stream,  its  banks  a  mass  of  wild  grapes,  and  they  fitting  called  it 
"El  Uva."  The  Americans  made  "rough-house"  of  this  by  calling 
it  "Yuba."  Then  the  miners  built  a  dam  across  the  little  river  and 
as  "Yuba  dam"  the  name  has  gone  into  the  geographies  if  not  into 
profanity.  The  American  river  early  received  its  name  from  the 
fact  that  this  stream  was  once  a  famous  game  resort,  attracting 
bands  of  American  hunters  and  trappers  across  the  continent  to 
that  locality  long  before  immigration  started  towards  the  Pacific. 
The  same  Americans  caching  their  furs  and  other  prizes  of  the 
chase  along  the  streams  where  they  hunted  and  trapped  gave  name 
td  one — Cache  creek — a  creek  with  the  importance  of  a  river, 
as  is  manifest  when  the  mountain  reservoirs  at  its  source  are 
feeding  their  waters  through  it  to  the  plain  lands.  Putah  creek, 
another  small  stream  running  from  the  coast  range  to  the  big 
rio  on  the  east,  and  the  division  line  between  Yolo  and  Solano 
counties  on  the  south,  is  another  sample  of  name-evolution.  It  was 
originally  known  as  the  Rio  de  los  Putos — the  Puto  tribe  of  In- 
dians living  on  its  shores.  Even  John  H.  Wolfskill's  Mexican 
grant  of  land  extending  along  its  banks  has  ever  been  known 
as  the  Rancho  Rio  de  los  Putos.  But  in  the  change  of  titles— and 
the  Spanish  speakers  made  the  change — the  "river"  became  Putah 
creek,  and  not  a  nice  name  for  such  a  modest,  respectable,  little 
mountain  stream.    However,  there  be  nothing  in  a  name. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY 


CHAPTER  II 
THROUGH  A  SLUMBER  PERIOD 

The  last  mission — Francisco  cle  Solano  at  Sonoma — was  estab- 
lished at  Sonoma  July  4,  1823,  and  that  was  about  the  "fartherest 
north"  of  the  Spanish-Americans,  or  Calif ornians ;  the  upper 
portion  of  the  territory  being  left  to  the  North  Americans  who  for 
the  next  fifteen  or  eighteen  years  came  over  the  eastern  mountains 
and  into  the  great  valley  as  hunters.  It  was  a  slumber  time  in 
the  land  just  before  the  rude  awakening  in  the  "Roaring  Forties." 
The  Californians  did  not  welcome  the  strangers — in  fact,  the  people 
from  the  states  were  always  considered  as  worthy  of  suspicion. 
"These  Anglo-Americans  will  become  troublesome,"  said  a  long- 
headed governor  of  California,  as  early  as  1805.  All  English 
speakers  to  them  were  "gringos,"  and  generally  dangerous  char- 
acters. The  name  has  an  amusing  origin.  During  that  period  the 
old  song  "Green  Grow  the  Rushes  O,"  was  very  popular  and 
every  North  American  seemed  to  be  singing  it.  The  Spanish- 
Americans  caught  the  often-repeated  words  "Green  grow,"  and 
turned  them  into  "gringo,"  a  term  of  derision  for  the  Yankees. 
But  the  "Green  Grows"  kept  a-coming. 

THE    HISTORY-MAKING   SMITHS 

The  pioneer  of  those  hardy,  fearless  huntsmen — in  fact,  the  first 
transcontinental  tourist  of  the  countless  army  that  has  made  its 
way  westward  "across  the  plains" — is  Jedediah  S.  Smith.  Wher- 
ever there  is  history  to  be  made  there  is  remarkably  often  a  Smith 
around  "to  help."  Capt.  J.  S.  Smith  was  a  partner  of  William 
H.  Ashley,  the  well-known  hunter  and  trapper  who  in  1824  dis- 
covered the  Great  Salt  Lake  in  Utah.  In  1826  he  made  his  memor- 
able traverse  of  the  Continent,  coming  through  Walker's  Pass  of  the 
Sierras  into  California  with  his  company  of  hunters.  They  were 
immediately  arrested  by  the  Mexican  officials,  but  were  finally 
released.  Afterwards,  the  authorities  sought  again  to  capture 
Smith,  but  with  his  band  that  traveler  was  hunting  along  the 
Sacramento  and  American  rivers — out  of  reach  of  the  Cali- 
fornians. Several  years  after  this  he  was  killed  in  New  Mexico  by 
the  Indians.  Another  great  hunter  who  made  the  west  his  game 
ground  was  Alexander  Roderick  McLeod  of  the  Hudson  Bay  Com- 
pany. In  the  winter  of  1827-8  he  was  caught  in  the  snow  on  the 
bank  of  the  river  he  had  discovered  and  the  whole  band  almost 
starved  to  death.  Even  this  near-tragedy  did  not  assist  in  his  honor 
as  the  river  got  on  the  maps  as  the  "McCloud." 


ID  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

CACHED  THEIR  PELTS  BY  THE  CREEK 

In  1829  Ewing  Young,  with  a  company  of  hunters,  worked 
along  the  San  Joaquin,  Sacramento  and  other  streams  of  the  great 
valley.  They  remained  a  considerable  time  on  Cache  creek.  So 
numerous  was  the  fur-bearing  game  by  the  waters  of  the  central 
and  northern  part  of  the  state  that  the  many  bands  of  hunters 
roving  over  the  country  reaped  there  a  rich  harvest.  Naturally, 
a  land  teeming  with  conditions  so  favorable  for  occupancy  would 
be  the  ideal  home  for  the  Indians.  With  the  streams  full  of  fish, 
woods  full  of  game,  the  food  question  was  solved  for  them.  This 
in  a  measure  accounts  for  their  indolence,  spiritlessness.  They 
grew  fat  and  lazy.  With  bow  and  arrows  and  other  weapons 
which  they  skillfully  made  and  used  they  could  kill  any  animal 
they  met,  or  could  successfully  trap  birds  and  fish,  but  they  in 
general  preferred  a  milder  diet,  such  as  acorns,  berries,  roots, 
grass  seeds  and  the  grass  itself.  The  mild  climate  made  covering 
of  secondary  or  of  no  importance,  consequently  the  Indian  put  in 
much  less  time  building  houses  than  did  the  beaver.  A  few  tules 
or  willow-boughs  bound  together  sheltered  him,  and  almost  noth- 
ing— frequently  nothing — clothed  him.  Some  of  the  chiefs  were 
notable  exceptions  to  the  rule,  but  that  is  what  made  them  chiefs. 

CHIEF   FRANCISCO    SOLANO 

One  of  these  was  Francisco  Solano,  the  head  of  all  the  tribes 
from  Bodega  bay  to  the  Sacramento  river.  His  original  name 
was  Sem  Yeto,  but  the  mission  fathers  at  Sonoma  caught  him, 
baptized  him  and  gave  him  the  name  of  their  mission.  General 
Yallejo,  the  comandante  of  this  military  division  of  the  territory, 
treated  the  chief  kindly — something  remarkable  for  a  Spaniard, 
but  M.  G.  Yallejo  was  a  remarkable  Spaniard — though  he  would 
resent  being  called  a  Spaniard.  He  was  just  to  all  men — even  to 
Indians — and  through  Solano,  whom  he  made  his  ally  and  friend, 
governed  the  thousands  of  irresponsible  savages  in  the  district. 
Solano — originally  meaning  an  east  wind  blowing  across  Old 
Spain;  then  the  name  of  a  young  priest  toiling  among  the  western 
Indians;  then  the  mission  at  Sonoma;  also  the  baptismal  title 
of  a  native  accepting  wonderingly  and  only  half  understandiugly 
the  white  man's  faith;  and  finally  a  rich  county  of  this  noble 
domain.  Of  course,  as  Sem  Yeto  went  deeper  into  civilization  he 
naturally  lost  much  of  his  kindly  savage  disposition  and  adopted 
the  white  man's  polished  faults;  and  as  he  tasted  of  the  pleasures 
engendered  by  the  mission  grape,  he  frequently  put  away  the 
saintliness  of  his  mission  training.  Yallejo  occasionally  had  to 
correct  the  manners  of  his  red  ally,  but  a  night  in  the  guard- 
house would  bring  the  usual  aching  head  and  the  consequent 
repentance  of  the  morrow. 


HISTORY   OF    YOLO   COUNTY  11 


CHAPTER  III 

A  MILD   LAND -A   MILD   INDIAN 

The  proverbial  temperamental  mildness  of  the  California 
Digger  Indian  is  characteristic  of  the  climatic  condition  of  the 
country — warm  winters,  cool  summers,  full  harvests,  wild  or  do- 
mestic, in  every  season,  with  every  prospect  pleasing  and  only 
man  being  vile.  The  mission  of  the  missions  as  originally  intended 
by  Spain  was  to  fit  the  natives  of  her  Pacific  coast  possessions  for 
citizenship.  She  could  not  hope  to  make  them  good  Spaniards 
but  she  thought  to  make  them  good  Catholics,  and  with  some 
education  they  would  do  till  amalgamated  and  lost  in  the  white 
race.  But  the  Mission  Fathers  early  saw  that  the  natives  of  Las 
Californias  were  not  satisfactory  raw  material  for  civilization; 
that  the  new  convert  would  jump  the  mission  compound  and  revert 
to  his  original  wilds  on  the  slightest  provocation.  The  plan  of 
soul  salvation  did  not  interest  the  "neophyte"  digger  as  much 
as  did  the  chile  con  came  meals  which  the  priests  served  up  to 
their  charges — and  the  Franciscan  missionaries  have  ever  been 
good  cooks;  and  the  wise  old  padres  seeing  they  had  to  feed  their 
converts  to  keep  them  faithful,  made  them  work  on  the  mission 
ranchos.  So,  Lo  was  the  farmer,  the  herder  and  the  man  of  what- 
ever work  he  could  be  persuaded  to  do. 

HE    WAS    THE    ADOBE    BTULDER 

In  the  rough  adobe  architecture  he  was  the  builder  under  the 
direction  of  the  priestly  architect.  He  soon  learned  to  mold  the 
big  mud-bricks,  sun-drying  them  first  on  one  side  then  on  the 
other,  and  then  plastering  the  hard  earth-cakes  into  walls.  He 
was  a  fairly  good  worker — fairly  good  for  that  early  California 
day — and  not  difficult  to  herd  to  his  job.  Plenty  of  came  for 
him,  when  the  vaqueros  rode  in  with  a  fat  steer,  and  beans  on  the 
side  and  the  chief  life-problem  was  solved.  He  never  struck  for 
higher  laborers'  wages,  because  he  never  received  any  kind  of 
wages.  Where  he  stayed  on  the  ranchos  and  was  as  useful  as  his 
limited  intelligence  permitted,  he  was  as  well  off  as  he  would 
have  been  astray  amid  the  wilds;  doubtless  around  the  hacienda 
kitchen  he  found  existence  as  safe  as  he  would  have  found  it  while 
running  free  and  rounding  up  the  sprightly  grasshopper  on  the 
"•olden  summer  hills.  The  Digger  has  become  a  "rare  bird." 
Civilization  and  to  him  kindred  epidemics  have  swept  him  away. 
In  the  great  conflict  of  the  human  races  only  the  fittest  can  sur- 
vive. Here  and  there  over  the  country  where  once  the  red  thou- 
sands   roved   are   remnants — a    few   who    have    exchanged   the   un- 


12  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

clean  rancheria,  the  unwholesome  life,  for  a  more  sanitary  exi st- 
ance— near  some  fruit  or  hop  ranch  where  they  readily  find  em- 
ployment, and  opportunities  to  imitate  in  dress  and  manner  of 
living  the  white  people.  The  sites  of  forgotten  Indian  habitations 
are  marked  by  the  only  things  time  cannot  quickly  obliterate — 
old  stone  mortars  where  the  mahalas  mashed  the  acorn  kernels  for 
the  native  bread.  Even  the  grand  oaks  of  California  shed  manna 
for  her  forest  children.  In  their  season  these  acorns  were  gath- 
ered and  cached,  till  needed,  up  among  the  branches  of  the  mother- 
tree.  It  was  an  exceedingly  course  flour  or  meal  that  came  from 
these  rude  mortars,  but  this  made  it  more  healthful,  possibly,  and 
with  water  heated  by  hot  stones  in  their  tightly-woven  fiber  bas- 
kets the  ground  acorns  were  cooked  in  batter  or  resembling  loaves. 
This  "daily  bread"  of  the  wilderness,  seasoned  with  ashes  and 
different  kinds  of  "dirts,"  was  not  rich  in  nutriment  nor  exquisite 
in  flavor  but  served  with  a  plain  salad  of  green  clover  and  a  relish 
of  grass  seeds  or  pine  nuts,  made  the  "quiet  family  meal,"  or 
"howling  tribal  feast,"  what  the  country  newspaper  writer  calls 
"a  sumptuous  repast." 

TRIBES    OF    THE    SONOMA    DISTRICT 

It  is  not  known  how  many  tribes  dwelt  within  the  Sonoma 
district  before  the  deadly  whites  and  other  ills  got  among  them. 
By  "Sonoma  district"  is  meant  what  is  now  known  as  Yrolo, 
Solano,  Napa,  Sonoma  and  probably  part  of  Mendocino  and 
Lake  counties.  These  "tribes"  were  mere  bands  having  Indian 
family  names,  and  occupying  some  special  locality.  They  had 
their  ceremonious  "dances"  for  pleasure  and  their  "sweat-houses" 
for  health,  and  they  fought  among  themselves  at  "the  drop  of  a 
hat" — often  the  most  trivial  matter  would  set  one  rancheria  against 
a  neighbor,  and  a  bloody  feud  would  be  on.  But  deadly  epidemics 
would  suddenly  break  out  among'  Indians,  often  destroying  whole 
bands.  In  the  early  portion  of  the  '40s  smallpox  appeared  among 
the  rancherias  and  the  scourge  swept  through  the  entire  district. 
The  stricken  people  having  no  sanitary  habits  or  treatment  of 
sickness  other  than  a  parboiling  in  the  unclean  and  disease-breeding 
sweat-house,  followed  by  a  plunge  in  cold  water,  were  easy  victims. 
The  death-dealing  microbe  of  whatever  form  of  pestilence  was 
then  in  action,  struck  right  and  left,  and  it  is  estimated  that  seventy- 
five  or  eighty  thousand  Indians  perished  within  the  district  before 
the  plague  wore  itself  out. 

PASSED  AND  LEFT  NO  MEMORY 

The  red  people  of  California,  less  able  to  exist  than  any  of 
the  American  aborigines,  have  virtually  passed  away,  leaving  not  a 
relic  of  their  presence,  leaving  not  a  picturesque  memory  in  the 
grand   domain  they  inhabited.     It  is  a   reasonable   thought   that   a 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  13 

race  of  human  beings  living  remote  from  the  disturbing  influence 
of  aliens,  possessing  this  goodly  land  in  fee-simple  for  ages, 
would  draw  something  akin  to  inspiration  from  the  noble  moan- 
tains  and  valleys  around  them  and  in  course  of  generations  would 
have  arisen  from  their  primitive  sordidness  but  little  above  their 
brother,  the  coyote,  to  at  least  the  first  steps  in  the  scale  of  human 
superiority.  In  the  southwest,  the  Indians — remnant  branches  of 
the  lordly  Aztecs — have  left  on  the  Arizonan  and  Mexican  mesas 
imperishable  and  frequently  rare  objects  of  their  intelligence  and 
morality.  In  the  northwest  the  native  and  original  occupants, 
while  not  possessing  the  near-civilization  of  the  more  southern 
tribes,  had  the  inborn  quality  of  sturdy  manhood,  the  spirit  of 
independence  that  moved  them  to  fight  for  their  streams  and 
forests.  In  California  the  Indian  was  destined  to  disappear  mi 
honored  and  unsung  and  no  system  of  conservation  could  have 
checked  his  going. 


14  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER   IV 
THE    FAIR    AMAZON    CALIFORNIA 

The  name  "California"  lias  come  through  broken  accounts 
from  an  origin  vague,  distant,  impalpable.  The  treasure-mad  ad- 
venturers of  Spain  always  seeking  undiscovered  golden  troves,  be- 
lieved in  the  fierceness  of  their  desire,  there  were  other  places  on 
the  new  continent  rivaling  the  stored  wealth  of  the  Peruvian  Inca 
from  whom  Pizarro  looted  richly  and  murderously  or  of  Monte- 
zuma, the  pitiable  victim  of  the  insatiable  Cortes.  Fictionists  of 
the  times  wrote  stories  of  mighty  cities  in  the  mystic  west  peopled 
by  semi-supernatural  beings  who  jealously  watched  their  vast  treas- 
uries. One  of  these  writers  was  Ordonez  de  Montalvo,  and  his 
book,  "Sergas  de  Esplandian,"  published  in  1510,  told  of  the  fairy 
"Island  of  California,"  where  beautiful  amazons  and  grim  griffins 
ruled  not  only  the  feminine  wealth  but  the  mineral  treasure  as 
well.  The  young  and  valiant  grandee  and  knight  of  belt  and  spur, 
Esplandian,  in  his  wanderings  over  mystic  seas  meets  the  wild 
queen  "Califa,"  in  her  capital  city,  where  after  numberless  fierce 
fights  between  his  followers  and  her  dragon-like  people,  he  suc- 
ceeds— if  not  in  wholly  conquering  the  place — in  making  her  fall 
in  love  with  him.  Califa  was  devoted  to  her  Spanish  cavalier — 
something  of  the  devotion  of  a  tigress — and  it  took  all  the  valor 
and  vigilance  of  her  lover  to  keep  his  life  secure  when  she  had 
an  unusual  "tender"  spell.  Her  savage  griffins  also  had  an  un- 
pleasant habit  of  flying  around  on  their  bat-wings  and  picking  up 
white  soldiers  which  they  would  joyfully  lift  to  a  great  height  and 
then  drop.  Of  course,  the  trooper  thus  treated  was  of  no  use 
afterwards.  Because  of  their  bird-like  manners,  Montalvo,  in  his 
book,  dipped  into  the  Greek  and  calls  them  "ornis,"  and  Califa  is 
from  "Kalli"  (beautiful)  in  the  same  classic  tongue.  "The  f 
was  inserted  for  the  sake  of  euphony,"  said  the  late  Prof.  George 
Davidson,  the  navigator  and  translator — hence  we  have  "Califor- 
nia"— beautiful  bird. 

A  GOLDEN   TALE 

This  golden  AH  Baba  tale  was  popular  with  the  Spanish 
knights  of  fortune,  and  doubtless  Juan  Rodrigues  Cabrillo,  when 
he  saw  the  group  of  islands  off  the  southern  coast  of  this  state 
named  them  after  the  amazon  queens  of  the  novel,  as  they  were 
first  known  as  "Las  Calif ornias. "  Should  he  have  gone  further 
into  the  province  he  found  and  named  so  fittingly  for  the  golden 
queen,  Califa.  he  might  have  won  the  golden  lure  that  had  drawn 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  15 

him  thither.     But  his  death  and  burial  on  one  of  his  newly-discov- 
ered coast-islands  ended  him  and  his  career. 

SPAIN   IN  HER  MAD  DANCE  OF  DEATH 

During  a  slumber  interval  of  almost  two  centuries  Spain  had 
moved  downward.  On  land  and  sea  her  once  colossal  power  had 
diminished.  She  yet  held  her  many  colonies  but  her  grasp  was 
weak.  On  the  oceans  her  commerce  was  the  prey  of  any  nation 
or  nations  who  chose  to  plunder  it.  English  and  Dutch  privateers 
and  freebooters  from  all  parts  of  the  globe  issued  from  their  pirat- 
ical lairs  to  rob  her  ships  and  ravish  her  ports  at  home  and  abroad. 
The  energy,  enterprise,  courage  and  knighthood  that  had  won  her 
the  highest  place  among  the  nations  were  passing,  and  she  was 
dying  in  the  demoralization  of  her  own  wealth  and  greatness.  Her 
kings  and  nobles  were  whirling  in  a  mad  dance  in  the  midst  of  a  na- 
tional luxury  never  before  known,  while  her  peasants  were  lying  in 
degradation  and  starvation.  Official  stupidity,  corruption,  disloy- 
alty and  others  forms  of  national  decay  were  breaking  down  the 
once  strong  kingdom,  and  placing  her  at  the  mercy  of  her  old  ene- 
mies. Spain  had  never  been  a  gentle  foe  and  those  who  had  felt 
her  heavy  hand  were  now  ready  to  strip  her.  Then  she  had  a  par- 
tial awakening.  Her  foreign  lands  must  be  colonized  with  loyal 
Spanish  subjects  and  these  welded  to  the  home  country,  forming  the 
whole  into  the  once-invincible  kingdom.  Where  white  colonists  were 
not  available,  the  natives  must  be  Christianized,  civilized  and  citi- 
zenized.  It  became  an  era  of  politico-religio-zeal — in  fact  as  cour- 
age went  down  in  the  Spanish  soldier  it  arose  in  the  Spanish  priest, 
and  Spain  planned  to  use  it  to  bulwark  her  threatened  possessions. 
The  Jesuits  were  encouraged  to  begin  in  Lower  California,  and 
among  these  savages — about  as  savage  as  any  on  the  American 
continent — the  laborious  padres  presently  had  sixteen  missions  in 
commission.  These  priests  continued  there  until  the  royal  edict 
drove  them  from  Spanish  dominions.  The  Franciscans  were  given 
charge  of  the  Jesuit  missions  of  Baja  California  in  1768,  and  from 
a  material  point  of  view  it  was  a  poor  gift,  as  the  sterile  soil  around 
the  settlements  could  hardly  support  a  flock  of  goats.  Conse- 
quently Junipero  Serra,  the  president  of  the  order,  extended  his 
territory  northward,  and  the  chain  of  twenty-one  missions  from 
San  Diego  to  Sonoma  was  the  result  of  that  zealous  father's  labors. 
This  work  of  occupation  and  colonization  of  Alta  California  was  the 
joint  work  of  the  state  and  church,  hence  when  the  missions  were 
secularized  in  1834 — sixty-five  years  after — the  government  justi- 
fied its  act  on  the  ground  that  the  state  was  supreme  in  control 
and  disposal  of  the  property. 


16  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


THEY   TELL   THE   ROSARY   OF   THE    MISSIONS 

While  the  Franciscans  here  sowed  the  seeds  of  Christian  civili- 
zation it  cannot  he  said  that  the  seed  dropped  on  other  than  sterile 
ground — and  sterile  ground,  too,  is  a  term  foreign  to  California. 
Their  voices  went  crying  into  the  wilderness  to  fall  in  stony  places, 
stony  hearts,  and  the  colonization  scheme  that  was  to  shape  the  In- 
dian into  a  militant  part  of  the  Spanish  kingdom  only  resulted  in 
a  string  of  ehurchly  landmarks  stretching  along  the  coast  more  or 
less  in  ruins.  Yet  they  tell  a  quaintly  fascinating  story  these  adobe 
piles  that  stand  on  the  Camino  Real — "royal  road"  that  runs  along 
the  twenty-one  missions — and  they  were  the  stopping  places  along 
that  seven  hundred  miles  of  the  highway  of  the  cross.  And  these 
quaint  sites  tell  the  rosary  of  the  California  missions,  stripped  of 
all  but  the  saintly  association  of  a  past  day. 

CARLOS    ASD    HIS    MIGHTY    DOMINION 

California  was  the  last  accumulation,  the  last  domain  added  to 
the  vast  empire-kingdom  of  that  monarch  who  was  at  once  an  emperor 
(Charles  Y  of  Germany)  and  a  king  (Carlos  I  of  Spain).  He  first 
came  to  the  German  throne  through  his  deceased  maternal  grand- 
father, Maximilian,  and  while  fighting  at  the  head  of  his  army  in 
the  Netherlands  he  was  lifted  to  the  Spanish  crown  by  the  death  of 
his  paternal  grandfather,  Ferdinand  Charles — or  Carlos,  whatever 
name  the  reader  may  select.  He  was  a  good  fighter,  a  zealous 
churchman,  and  made  things  exceedingly  interesting  for  his  political 
and  ecclesiastical  opponents.  As  Henry  YIII  of  England  and 
Francis  I  of  France  were  defeated  though  not  discouraged  candi- 
dates for  the  imperial  part  of  his  double  royal  job,  and  as  Martin 
Luther  at  that  auspicious  period  was  shaking  Europe  with  the 
Reformation,  the  emperor-king  had  full  opportunity  to  exercise  his 
militant  characteristic.  But  they  wore  him  out  in  thirty  years  of 
battle,  and  resigning  his  crowns  he  died  in  the  peace  and  the  silence 
of  a  monastery.  "The  path  of  glory  leads  but  to  the  grave."  The 
rebellious  dispositions  of  most  of  the  subjects  in  his  empire  kept 
him  so  busy  that  he  did  not  see  his  kingdom — then  the  greatest  on 
earth — for  years,  and  the  maladministrations  of  his  six  immediate 
successors  further  sent  Spain  on  the  downward  road  that  ended 
when  her  flag  fell  in  Cuba  and  the  Philippines,  and  the  last  of  her 
foreign  possessions  passed  away. 

PLAYING   AT    GOVERNMENT   IN    MANANA   LAND 

In  constant  turmoil  at  home  Spain  left  her  western  possessions. 
Mexico  and  California,  to  get  along  with  only  intermittent  atten- 
tion. Between  1767  and  1822  ten  Spanish  governors  had  more  or 
less  ruled  Alta  California,  but  these  easy-going  soldiers  of  fortune 
had  stayed  pretty  close  to  the  seashore.  They  found  the  pueblos 
around    the   missions    better   stocked   with   food — produced   by   the 


HISTORY   OF    YOLO   COUNTY  17 

padres  and  their  Indian  converts — than  any  wilder  inland  station 
conld  be.  Of  course,  the  different  governors  and  comandantes  fre- 
quently aroused  themselves  for  a  "family  row,"  but  there  was  in 
these  contentions  more  fluent  talking  than  real  fighting;  and  the 
placid  siesta  was  soon  on  again.  They  occasionally  defied  the 
mother  country — whether  Spain  or  afterwards  Mexico — but  a  few 
lurid  proclamations,  "pronunciamentos,"  would  clear  away  the 
war-clouds.  It  was  on  again,  off  again,  without  any  powder  burned 
over  the  political  changes  in  this  "manana"  land.  Yet  there  was  one 
issue  that  drew  these  sons  of  Old  Spain  into  something  like  unity, 
and  that  was  the  North  American,  the  Gringo.  For  generations 
Castile-and-Aragon  had  seen  her  standards  tossed  and  torn  on 
English  bayonets  and  her  armadas  go  gurgling  down  in  the  deep 
under  the  guns  of  the  invincible  Albion  and  the  Y^ankee  was  of  that 
perfidious  blood — and  to  be  feared  and  shunned.  The  Spanish  in 
California,  with  the  purblindness  which  has  been  a  distinct  national 
characteristic  of  the  race  always,  often  carried  to  extreme  lengths 
their  senseless  antagonism  to  their  sole  and  powerful  neighbor, — 
even  to  annexing  themselves  to  some  European  monarchy.  And 
there  is  no  doubt  that  Great  Britain  would  have  been  that  mon- 
archy had  not  the  American  fleet  been  in  Monterey  bay  at  the 
psychological  hour. 


18  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER  V 
SPAIN   MOTHERED    HER    SIMPLE    PEOPLE 

Spain  was  an  infliction  on  the  North  American  continent  not- 
withstanding Columbus,  Isabella  and  the  heroic  pawning  of  the 
royal  gems.  And  yet,  Spain  being  here,  did  fairly  well.  The  world 
looking  over  her  blunders,  her  ruins,  may  see  amid  the  debris  of 
what  was  once  a  portion  of  her  national  greatness  gleams  of  some- 
thing that  can  be  marked  "bueno" — good.  A  portion  of  the  "well" 
she  did  was  turning  her  priests  at  the  savages  she  found  here,  and 
the  work  of  St.  Solano,  Junipero  Serra  and  others  in  evidence  that 
the  cowled  warrior  of  Castile  and  Aragon  in  the  foreign  missions 
was  the  knightly  Spaniard  when  the  military  manhood  of  Spain 
was  dying.  And  the  mother-country  seemed  to  understand  her 
colonists — her  simple  people,  and  she  selected  for  them  about  what 
was  good  for  them.  A  ponderous  political  institution  such  as  we 
gringos  stagger  under  would  have  crushed  them ;  so  she  gave  them  a 
government  tempered  with  maternalism;  gave  them  burdens  easy  to 
be  borne;  put  them  under  laws  simple  in  reading  and  easy  to  be 
kept,  and  she  often  failed  to  note  and  correct  their  faults.  Possibly 
the  ultra-mild  supervisions  made  the  revolutions  so  frequent  and 
popular  in  Spanish-America.  The  adobe  in  which  they  housed 
themselves  was  not  a  thing  of  beauty,  but  it  was  warm  in  winter, 
cool  in  summer — a  joy  to  live  in  and  easy  to  build.  There  was  no 
ornamentation  without  or  within  and  little  variety  of  form  any- 
where, and  while  every  man  was  his  own  architect  and  builder  he 
architected  and  built  like  his  neighbor.  From  "dirt"  floors  to  tile 
roofs  in  the  big  houses  there  was  so  little  wood  or  any  combustible 
that  the  fire  insurance  business  was  the  last  institution  that  got 
over  the  Sierras  into  California.  The  front  or  upper  story  of  the 
house  contained  the  quarters  of  the  don  and  his  family,  which  was 
generally  a  large  one,  and  here  he  entertained  his  social  equals — 
the  quality  folk  of  the  pueblo.  The  other  portions  of  the  hacienda 
were  for  the  herders,  house-servants,  also  the  retainers  and  rancho 
loafers.  These  latter  were  Indians,  full  or  half-breeds,  and  world- 
floats  of  an  unknown  moral  quality. 

THE   DON   AND   HIS    CHILDISH   PENSIONERS 

But  the  Spanish-Californian  was  kind  to  his  pensioners.  Doubt- 
less often  in  their  quantity  and  general  uselessness  he  found  them 
an  almost  insufferable  nuisance,  but  while  he  had  a  league  of  rancho 
left  or  a  head  of  cattle  straying  over  it  he  fed  them.  The  grain 
lands  did  not  produce  great  harvests  "before  the  gringo  came,"  but 
there   were   plenty  of  tortillas    (thin  cakes   baked   by   anv  kind   of 


HISTORY   OF    YOLO   COUNTY  1!) 

fire)  and  carne.  Out  in  a  near  tree  in  the  clean,  dry  air  where  it 
would  keep  fresh  till  eaten  was  there  not  a  fresh  beef,  and  was 
there  not  more  out  on  the  range  ?  And  were  there  not  beans  and  hot 
peppers  for  the  ola  prodrida  pot?  Madre  de  Dios!  did  one  go  hun- 
gry then! 

A  civic  government  in  a  Spanish  colony  was  simply  and  wisely 
handled.  Its  junta,  or  council,  were  two  alcaldes  (mayors  or 
judges),  two  or  four  councilmen  and  a  treasurer.  The  alcaldes 
were  the  presiding  officers,  and  the  councilmen  helped,  but  it  was 
the  treasurer  who  did  the  heavyweight  work,  for  he  was  tax  col- 
lector, city  attorney,  clerk,  recorder  and  other  useful  things — and 
he  got  no  regular  salary.  The  treasury  part  of  his  official  duty  was 
the  lightest,  as  taxation  and  public  expenditure  were  ever  at  low 
ebb.    It  did  not  cost  much  to  run  a  city  then. 

The  hordes  of  high-salaried  officials  and  political  heelers  quar- 
tered on  the  municipality  were  not  a  civic  necessity  then.  Poli- 
ticians may  have  been  no  more  honest  then  than  now,  but  where 
there  was  nothing  to  steal  there  was  no  stealing.  The  city-dads  pre- 
vented the  plundering  of  the  taxpayers  by  the  simple  expedient 
of  having  no  taxpayers.  Most  all  cooking  was  done  in  outdoor 
ovens  and  kitchens  and  in  these  adobe  houses  there  was  not  fuel  to 
keep  a  fire  department  in  existence.  The  water  utility  was  a  public 
well  in  the  plaza  where  the  housekeeping  senoras  with  their  water 
jars  met  to  mix  the  gossip  of  their  different  localities,  and  the 
street-lighting  consisted  of  a  lantern  hung  over  or  before  the  door 
from  twilight  until  the  candle  burned  out.  The  policing  of  the  town 
was  generally  done  by  some  ex-soldier — whose  army  training  and 
militant  fierceness  were  supposed  to  overawe  would-be  disturbers 
of  the  pueblo  peace.  Street  work  seldom  extended  beyond  an  occas- 
ional digging  and  shoveling  before  one's  own  premises. 

NO    PONDEROUS    JUDICIARY    NEEDED 

The  judiciary  was  as  simple  as  the  legislative.  Among  the 
Spanish  pioneers  of  California  there  were  few  breeches  of  law  and 
order  and  hardly  any  crime.  For  the  first  mentioned  a  fine  or 
flogging  was  the  result  and  for  the  greater  offenses  the  penalty 
came  sure  and  soon,  with  the  priest  to  chant  the  prayers  for  the 
dying.  Those  were  days  rough  and  wild  with  an  open  country  in 
which  a  bad  man  might  escape,  consequently  the  courts  made  deter- 
rent examples  when  they  corralled  the  bad  man.  These  tribunals 
weighed  the  old,  old  questions  of  right  and  wrong,  and  not  the 
verbal  formation  of  a  law  term,  and  Spanish  justice  did  not  become 
lost  under  American  technicalities.  Minor  offenses  and  actions  in- 
volving $100  and  less  were  settled  before  the  alcalde,  while  cases 
of  more  weight  or  importance  were  passed  up  to  the  district  or 
the  supreme  courts.    Either  party  could  demand  a  jury,  and  as  this 


20  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

body  of  three  or  five  persons  was  chosen  from  only  the  best  and 
most  intelligent  citizens  of  the  place,  and  as  the  courts  did  not  tol- 
erate "sparring  for  time,"  the  trial  went  through  unhampered  by 
wrangling  lawyers  and  archaic  rules  of  procedure.  The  members 
of  a  junta  or  ayuntamiento,  though  serving  without  pay,  were  liable 
to  fine  for  non-attendance,  and  resignations  were  difficult.  Even 
under  the  government  of  a  Spanish  king  three-quarters  of  a  century 
ago,  California  had  the  referendum.  When  a  question  of  import- 
ance was  before  the  ayuntamiento  and  there  was  a  division  of 
opinion,  the  alarma  publico  bell  was  rung  and  every  citizen  gath- 
ered immediately  at  the  assembly  hall,  or  was  fined  for  failure  to 
respond.  Then  and  there  the  people  by  the  simple  raising  of  hands 
voted  upon  and  decided  the  question.  Some  of  these  old  alcaldes 
were  unique  in  their  reasonings  and  all  were  wise  in  their  genera- 
tion. A  woman  complained  to  the  town  court  that  her  husband  per- 
sisted in  serenading  another  woman,  much  to  his  wife's  discomfort. 
It  is  possible  that  the  other  woman  was  the  prettier,  but  the  alcalde 
knew  that  justice  was  no  respecter  of  beauty.  Yet  there  was  noth- 
ing in  the  code  nor  city  ordinance  touching  the  playing  of  musical 
instruments  or  singing  to  unattached  females.  However,  the  judge 
looked  beyond  the  written  law  and  saw  the  fellow  and  his  guitar  at 
the  pleasure  of  the  wrong  woman  and  he  trusted  that  inspiration 
would  direct  him  to  an  equitable  adjustment  of  the  matter.  And  it 
ditl.  The  man  haled  into  court  was  sternly  ordered  to  play  the 
same  tune  he  had  played  for  the  too-fascinating  senora,  and  after 
he  had  nervously  done  so,  the  alcalde  sat  as  an  expert  in  melody  and 
fined  the  prisoner  $2,  holding  music  so  atrocious  could  be  only  a 
disturbance  of  the  peace. 

MILD    PKIESTLY    REGULATIONS 

Occasionally  the  padres  worked  into  the  ordinances  measures 
tinctured  like  unto  the  Connecticut  Blue  Laws,  as  in  the  old  records 
of  Monterey  (1816)  there  is  an  order  that  "all  persons  must  attend 
mass  and  respond  in  a  loud  voice,  and  if  any  person  should  fail  to 
do  so  without  good  cause  he  shall  be  put  in  the  stocks  for  three 
hours."  It  may  be  presumed  that  the  good  father  took  this  means 
to  secure  a  better  attendance  at  church  aud  warm  up  the  back- 
sliders. Although  the  priests  were  in  constant  clash  with  the  mili- 
tary, who  were  always  "agin"  and  jealous  of  churcbly  authority. 
they  maintained  a  very  mild  and  often  a  vague  spiritual  dominion 
over  the  ( 'alit'ornians.  Maria  was  a  good  church-woman,  as  is  her 
sex  ever,  but  Jose  was  lukewarm,  as  is  his  sex  usually.  He  had 
more  fear,  if  not  respect,  for  the  alcalde  and  the  police  power  of  the 
pueblo  than  for  the  parish  priest;  moreover,  the  stern  father  denied 
to  him  his  highest-prized  sins,  while  the  civil  authorities  frequently 
condoned  his  offenses.  These  padres  in  their  strong  opposition  to  a 
non-Roman    Catholic   population   laid    the   ban    of   the   church    upon 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  21 

marriage  between  foreigners  and  native  women.  But  dogma  was 
no  barrier  to  the  American  pioneer  or  wanderer  from  the  states, 
when  he  found  one  of  the  many  comely  senoritas  willing  to  annex 
him  to  the  Republic  of  Mexico  and  to  her  fair  self.  Generally  the 
local  priest  would  consent  to  baptize  the  new  "convert"  and  then 
marry  him  to  his  new  wife,  and  the  question  was  well  settled — the 
church  would  get  a  new  member,  the  Republic  of  Mexico  another 
subject,  and  the  girl  a  more  practical  and  useful  husband  than  her 
own  country  could  supply. 

ALL  THE   WORLD  LOVES  THE   SPANISH   GIRL 

All  the  world  over  there  is  no  more  charming  woman  than  the 
daughter  of  Spain.  Her  upholstery  may  not  represent  the  golden 
store  of  a  wealthy  man;  it  may  be  only  a  simple  chemisette  and 
skirt  with  silk  shawl  or  mantilla  thrown  over  head  and  shoulders  to 
fall  easily  toward  the  small,  slippered  feet,  but  it  is  a  dainty  combi- 
nation of  brilliant  color  and  natural  grace,  and  all  mankind  loves 
the  wearer.  The  women  of  the  Latin  race,  whether  they  hail  from 
Genoa  or  Seville,  alone  of  the  world's  sisterhood,  have  learned  how 
to  wear  their  hair — and  that  is  without  any  covering.  Hence  the  Cali- 
fornienne  of  the  last  century  wore  her  black  braids  of  tress  free  of 
the  fearfully  and  wonderfully  made  hat  or  bonnet  of  today,  and 
her  comeliness  has  not  been  improved  upon.  These  Spanish-Ameri- 
can girls  along  the  Pacific  littoral  made  good  wives,  good  house- 
keepers in  their  pioneer  homes,  and  good  mothers  to  their  large 
families.  Whether  the  foreign  wooer  came  from  over  the  Sierras  or 
over  the  Atlantic,  if  he  showed  a  disposition  to  settle  down  to  home- 
building  he  could  find  a  young  woman  favorable  to  the  project  and 
often  a  big  slice  of  rancho  for  experimental  ground.  And  as  the 
Mexican  don  for  years  had  been  tending  away  from  the  intolerant 
aristocracy  and  political  bigotry  of  case-hardened  Spain  to  the 
broad  democracy  of  North  America,  he  generally  approved  of  his 
young  daughter's  choice. 

Socially  the  Californian  in  general  had  no  objection  to  the 
North  American.  It  was  officialdom  wrangling  within  its  ranks  for 
the  small  distinction  and  the  small  gain  an  office  in  this  territory 
gave.  The  padres,  who  intensely  disliked  the  interfering,  not  ton 
conscientious  governors,  comandantes  and  small-fry  officers,  strongly 
opposed  republican  ideas.  Most  of  them  were  natives  of  Spain  and 
were  loyal  to  the  mother-country  that  had  established  their  mis- 
sions and  had  made  them  powerful  and  wealthy.  They  were  not 
only  disloyal  to  the  Republic  of  Mexico,  hut  were  a  barrier  to  immi 
gration  and  a  check  to  the  progress  of  Alta  California.  The  mis- 
sion ranchos,  church  lands,  absorbed  the  known  best  tracts  of  the 
state  and  the  secularization  of  the  vast  property  was  the  logical 
outcome.  There  are  yet  great  undivided  tracts  of  land  in  California 
— in  Yolo — for  which  the  landless  are  calling. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER  VI 

ALTA   CALIFORNIA   DRIFTS   TO    THE    GRINGO 

From  1775  to  1835  the  Pacific  rim  of  this  hemisphere  slipped 
through  its  sixty  years — two  generations — of  peace.  Europe  passed 
from  war  to  war,  and  the  Atlantic  seaboard  trembled  in  the  rever- 
berations of  hostile  guns.  California  was  too  young  and  too  far 
away  and  too  little  known  to  the  world,  and  her  people  between  the 
mountain  and  the  sea  left  alone  eddied  out  of  the  world's  current. 
They  were  children,  forgetful  of  yesterday,  living  in  today  that 
never  passed,  and  relegating  the  possible  adversities  to  the  tomor- 
row— the  manana — that  never  came.  They  were  careless  and  free, 
fond  of  the  fandango,  the  bull  fight  and  the  horse-race,  and  they 
mingled  these  earthly  diversions  with  the  ceremonies  of  the  church 
holiday.  Many  of  the  people  were  ex-soldiers,  dead  to  the  spirit  of 
war  and  alive  to  the  excitement  of  the  rancho,  and  as  militant  as 
the  old,  rusty  cannon  on  the  presidio  walls.  The  ex-mission  In- 
dians hanging  around  the  haciendas  could  be  hired  or  cajoled  into 
doing  the  little  hard  labor  of  the  establishments  and  this  added  to 
the  gay  caballero's  hours  of  idleness.  The  only  dissipation  they 
had,  however,  was  gambling,  and  anything  having  the  element  of 
chance  would  be  bet  on,  though  monte  was  the  favorite  card  game. 
They  accepted  good  fortune  without  lively  demonstrations  of  joy 
and  ill-luck  with  little  regret,  evidently  caring  more  for  the  gaming 
than  for  the  winning.  Sunday  afternoons,  religious  devotions  being 
finished,  some  festivity  was  in  order.  With  the  broad  unfenced 
plains  crowded  with  cattle  more  or  less  wild,  fleet  horses  were  neces- 
sary, consequently  there  were  few  such  riders  in  the  world.  How- 
ever, that  was  before  the  day  of  that  human  centaur,  the  American 
cowboy. 

EARLY    TAUGHT    TO    RIDE 

The  boy  at  an  early  age  was  taught  to  ride  at  a  breakneck 
speed  and  to  throw  the  riata  with  unerring  aim.  The  Spanish 
saddle  was  an  elaborate  piece  of  equine  furniture,  the  wooden 
frame,  or  "tree"  as  it  was  called,  being  fastened  to  the  animal's 
body  with  a  girth,  or  "cinch,"  made  of  the  closely  woven  hair  of 
his  own  tail.  This  was  taking  an  unfair  advantage  of  poor  cabdUo, 
but  the  hair  cinch  was  very  strong  and  was  the  only  fabric  that 
would  not  slip  on  his  smooth  coat.  Over  the  tree  was  fitted  a  wide 
leather  cover  called  "mecheres,"  and  on  the  stirrups,  to  protect  the 
rider's  feet  from  the  wild  undergrowth  of  the  range,  were  leather 
shields  or  "tapaderos,"  and  the  leather  leggings  on  his  lower  limbs 
were  for  the  same  purpose.     The  bridle  was  a  costly,  besilvered 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  23 

affair.of  finely  braided  rawhide  and  the  bit  was  an  exquisite  instru- 
ment of  torture.  To  the  half  or  quarter  "broke"  mustang  this  bit, 
its  steel  tongue  extending  far  up  within  the  mouth,  compelled 
obedience  on  the  slightest  pull  of  the  reins — in  fact,  the  horse  per- 
force soon  learned,  in  pain,  to  take  his  cue  from  the  mere  swing  of 
the  reins  on  his  neck.  And  always  a  necessary  part  of  this  pic- 
turesque rider's  makeup  was  a  pair  of  big  silver  spurs,  the  size  and 
ornamentation  designating  the  owner's  social  or  equestrian  stand- 
ing. Mount  one  of  these  fellows  on  a  spirited  mustang,  trappings 
agleam  in  polished  metal,  riata  hanging  in  graceful  festoons  from 
the  saddle  horn,  heavily-silvered  sombrero  on  his  head,  richly 
braided  short  jacket,  fine  cloth  pantaloons  with  outside  seam  slashed 
down  each  leg  and  laced  with  silk  cord,  around  the  waist  a  beautiful 
silken  sash,  over  the  shoulders  the  gracefully  flowing  serapa,  or 
cloak — then  set  the  little  silver  bell-tongues  on  his  spurs  tinkling 
musically  to  the  pace  of  his  prancing  steed,  and  time  never  pro- 
duced a  more  artistic  and  elaborate  centaur. 

DANDY   CENTAURS   OF   THE   RANCHO 

It  was  at  the  fiesta  or  "fandango,"  the  race-track,  the  cock-pit, 
the  bull-ring,  troops  of  these  fantastic  dandies  would  appear  and 
show-off  in  boyish  vanity  themselves  and  mounts  principally  for 
the  entertainment  and  admiration  of  the  sprightly  senorita  in  her 
laces  and  colors  out  for  a  California  holiday.  The  rodeo,  or  annual 
stock  round-up,  was  the  gala  time  for  the  vaquero,  when  the  cor- 
ralling and  the  roping  and  the  branding  of  the  herds  made  the 
rancho  throb  with  excitement;  when  in  the  adobe  hall  the  guitars 
tinkled  in  the  fantastic  dances  of  Old  Spain  and  the  satined  dandy 
descendant  of  Aragon  bowed,  vowed  and  "looked  love"  to  this  far 
western  heiress  of  Castile. 

MOTHER    MEXICO    AND    HER    CHILD 

During  all  these  slow,  sleepy  years  California  was  drifting  to 
the  in  aid it o  gringo  and  the  moving-picture  of  events  show  seriatim 
the  incidents  that  marked  that  drift.  The  newest  Californian,  the 
Native  Son — with  all  his  Bear  Flag  enthusiasm — knows  little  of  the 
stirring  story  of  his  state.  Real  estate  boomers  and  passenger 
agents  are  photoing  and  printing  the  scenic  grandeurs  of  this  won- 
derful coast,  but  its  past  history — undecorated  for  commercial  pur- 
poses—  is  not  among  its  younger  generation  a  very  popular  theme. 
Spain's  claim,  the  first,  had  gone  glimmering;  Francis  Drake  dur- 
ing his  flying  visit  to  this  coast  annexed  whatever  he  saw  to  Fug- 
land,  but  her  claim  had  long  since  lapsed,  beyond  the  hope  of  the 
most  ardent  litigant;  Russia  cut  herself  from  even  the  pleasures  of 
a  controversy  when  she  sold  Fort  Ross  and  its  lands  on  the  Sonoma 
coast  to  Capt.  John  A.  Sutter;  the  Mexican  empire  didn't  live 
long  enough  to  know  that   it   could   claim   anything   in   California, 


24  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

;m<l  the  Mexican  republic  was  too  busy  handling  its  own  revolutions 
— as  it  is  at  the  present  time;  moreover,  Madre  Mexicana  was 
mowing-  weary  of  the  antics  of  her  disobedient  nina,  Alta  Califor- 
nia, and  was  almost  willing  to  let  the  nnfilial  daughter  go,  providing 
she  did  not  go  to  the  gringo.  And  that  was  the  young  woman's  true 
destination. 

FIGHTING  OVER    THE   "ADMISSION" 

We  "encouraged"  Mexico  to  light  us,  and  our  policy  in  that 
has  provided  a  living  theme  for  our  moralistic  critics  who  are  only 
political  partisans  in  thin  disguise.  All  ages,  all  governments  have 
protesting  statesmen,  and  this  age — so  full  of  vituperative  free 
speech — has  a  protester  "roosting  on  every  stump."  But  our  fight 
with  Mexico  was  a  good  scrap  for  both  republics.  It  gave  her  all 
the  territory  she  can  handle,  and  it  rounded  us  out  from  ocean  to 
ocean,  making  our  country  proportionally  the  central,  the  predoini- 
nating  and  the  most  favorable  piece  of  soil  in  the  western  hemi- 
sphere; and  moreover,  it  kept  Europe  and  her  automaton  monarchs 
out  of  most  of  America.  Y"et  California  was  with  difficulty  forced 
through  the  gamut  of  protesters  and  into  the  Union.  In  fact,  she 
"admitted"  herself  almost  a  year  before  her  official  admission  got 
through  the  "slave  state"  question.  Note  the  beauty  and  incon- 
sistency of  this  class  of  American  statemanship :  Texas,  about  that 
time,  barely  justified  in  her  action,  gained  complete  independence  of 
Mexico  and  then  immediately  offered  herself  to  the  Union.  There 
was  no  special  hurry,  except  to  lie  on  hand  when  the  next  election 
day  came  around,  but  she  was  admitted,  a  slave  state,  and  by  a 
Whig  administration  whose  central  creed  was  anti-slavery.  And 
California,  a  ripe  plum  in  danger  of  falling  to  a  British  war  fleet, 
her  long-length  of  coast  to  be  a  constant  menace  to  the  United 
States,  was  a  bone  of  contention  between  the  Whigs  and  pro-slavery 
Democrats,  with  the  latter  favoring  the  admission,  and  against  the 
protest  of  these  same  Whigs.  The  protesting  statesmen  about  that 
time  proposed  that  California  be  sold  back  to  Mexico  for  $12,- 
000,000,  and  if  agreeable  to  the  southern  republic  San  Francisco  be 
retained,  allowing  Mexico  $3,000,000  on  account.  As  this  govern- 
ment has  assumed  a  Mexican  debt  of  $15,000,000  due  American 
citizens,  these  gleaming  diplomats  considered  they  were  proposing  a 
highly  profitable  national  real  estate  deal.  But  the  next  day— prac- 
tically—J.  W.  Marshall  digging  a  ditch  in  Coloma  creek  shoveled 
California  up  to  a  golden  figure  near  fifteen  hundred  millions  and  to 
a  moral  value  that  has  never  been  estimated. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY 


CHAPTER  VII 
FROM  SAX  DIEGO  TO  YOLO 

In  1542,  Cabrillo,  the  first  Spaniard  in  Alta  California,  reached 
San  Diego,  and  just  three  hundred  years  after  that  date  William 
Gordon  arrived  in  that  pueblo,  on  his  way  to  his  future  home  in  this 
county.  Thus  the  reader  sees  three  centuries  stretch  between  the 
first  settlement  of  California  and  the  first  settlement  of  Yolo.  They 
were  not  strenuous  Saxon  years  full  of  sound  and  fury,  that  came 
northward  along  the  Pacific  littoral;  they  were  slumberous  Spanish 
years,  made  up  of  mananas — tomorrows — that  walked-in-sleep  along 
the  leagues  of  golden  poppy-plains  and  across  the  emerald  oaten 
hills  to  wake  into,  to  break  into  the  burning  day  of  the  gringo.  With 
the  Spanish  soldier  came  the  Spanish  priest  and  over  field  and 
flock  the  missions  lifted — strong  in  rights  temporal  and  spiritual — 
to  flourish  awhile  amid  their  acres  and  acolytes,  and  then  go  down 
to  poor  parishes  and  dull  piles  of  adobe  ruins.  If  the  Spanish  sol- 
dier and  priest  left  little  or  nothing  to  mark  their  presence  here, 
they  left  no  black  record  of  brutality  or  injustice  in  their  treatment 
of  the  simple-minded  natives  of  the  land.  The  mild  demands  of 
the  missions  and  of  the  government  did  not  materially  interfere 
with  the  Indian's  creature  comforts;  and  if  his  spirituality  was 
shallow  or  doubtful,  his  residence  within  sight  of  the  chapel  ad- 
mitted him  to  the  mission  "soup-house"  where  the  meals  were 
regular.  Amid  the  memories  of  that  pastoral  period  the  reader 
may  hear  in  the  din  of  the  money-mad  present  the  faint,  sweet 
echoes  of  the  Angelus  bells  coming  from  the  missions  that  are  dead 
and  gone. 

IN   THE   ROARING   FORTIES 

But  time  went  faster  through  California  when  the  years  got. 
well  into  the  Forties — the  "Roaring  Forties."  The  centuries  of 
siesta  were  over  and  "hasta  manana," — till  tomorrow — became  less 
a  rule  of  daily  conduct.  The  capital  of  the  territory  swung  up  and 
down  the  coast  from  Monterey  to  Los  Angeles — occasionally  reach- 
ing as  far  as  San  Diego — just  as  the  new  governor  or  near-gov- 
ernor elected.  The  two  North  American  republics  were  threatening- 
each  other  across  the  Rio  Grande;  Dixie  was  clamoring  for  another 
slave  state,  and  the  "free  folks"  in  the  North  were  watching  to 
prevent  that  accomplishment.  Alvarado  was  the  governor  when 
(Oct.  19,  1842)  Commodore  Jones,  U.  S.  N.,  flew  his  flag  over  Mon- 
terey, and  corralled  California  for  Uncle  Sam.  Next  day  he  learned 
that  the  expected  war  had  not  commenced  and  he  hauled  the  fla."- 
down  with  apologies  fit  and  full. 


28  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


HAIR-TRIGGER    PIONEERS 


William  Knight  was  a  just  man,  but  sensitive  and  quick  to 
resent  what  he  considered  to  be  an  offense.  On  one  occasion  he  lie- 
came  offended  at  General  Sutter.  It  was  during  a  visit  to  the  fort, 
and  Knight,  when  the  argument  was  warmest,  produced  a  pair  of 
loaded  pistols  and  invited  Sutter  to  choose  one  and  step  outside 
where  they  could  settle  in  accordance  to  the  code.  The  settlement 
was  made  without  the  duello.  At  another  time  he  took  offense  at 
no  less  an  urbane  personage  than  General  Vallejo  and  invited  the 
distinguished  Sonoman  to  select  his  weapon  and  "step  outside." 
They  had  been  admiring  a  new  piano  just  purchased  by  the  Gen- 
eral for  his  family  and  thinking  to  be  jovial  he  asked  his  guest  to 
"play  for  the  ladies."  Unfortunately,  Knight  considered  it  a  re- 
flection on  his  lack  of  musical  culture  and  the  matter  ended  with  the 
challenge,  which,  of  course,  was  recalled  after  the  host  made  an 
explanation  and  apology. 

The  close  of  Knight's  career  should  have  been  more  auspicious. 
In  1849  he  was  operating  a  ferry  boat  on  the  Stanislaus  river,  in 
Stanislaus  county,  near  the  Calaveras  line.  Ever  since  that  time 
the  place  and  town  have  been  known  as  Knight's  Ferry.  He  died 
there  November  9  of  that  year,  and  is  or  was  supposed  to  have 
been  a  wealthy  man,  possessing  money  and  property  at  the  ferry. 
as  well  as  the  rancho  in  Yolo.  The  Knight  children  were  attending 
school  in  Benicia  and  Major  Stephen  Cooper  of  that  city,  who  was 
public  administrator,  was  solicited  to  come  to  the  ferry  and  take 
charge  of  the  mixed-up  affairs  of  the  deceased.  He  did  not  do  so 
and  all  the  Knight  estate,  money  and  lands,  melted  in  thin  air.  The 
heirs  got  nothing,  even  the  grant  deeds  were  mysteriously  lost. 

Another  of  the  settlers  of  '43  was  Thomas  M.  Hardy,  a  native 
of  England,  who  obtained  a  grant  of  six  square  leagues,  or  26,637 
acres,  located  along  Cache  creek  east  of  the  Gordon  grant,  extend- 
ing to  the  Sacramento.  His  rancho  was  called  the  "Rio  de  Jesus 
Maria,"  which  was  one  of  the  early  names  of  the  big  river.  Hardy 
was  a  rude,  unfriendly  man,  possessing  a  warm  dislike  for  the 
Americans  as  well  as  strong  sympathy  for  Mexico  and  the  Califor- 
nians.  He  constructed  a  tide  shack  on  the  west  bank  of  the  river 
near  the  mouth  of  the  Feather,  but  much  of  his  time  he  was  away 
from  his  home,  being  in  the  military  service  of  the  Mexican  govern- 
ment. In  1849  he  was  conveying  a  boat-load  of  passengers  to  San 
Francisco  and  at  Benicia  the  passengers  landed  with  Hardy's  dead 
body.  They  reported  that  on  the  trip  down  the  river  he  had  acci- 
dentally fallen  overboard  and  had  drowned.  No  other  account  being 
obtained  the  remains  were  buried  and  the  estate  of  the  deceased  was 
administered  upon. 


HISTORY   OF    YOLO   COUNTY  29 


"tinker,  the  dog  pioneer 
Nathan  Coombs,  head  of  the  Napa  pioneers  of  that  name, 
dropped  into  Yolo  that  year  and  "put  up"  with  Billy  Gordon.  Next 
year  his  connection  with  the  Gordon  family  became  more  perma- 
nent and  more  pronounced.  An  active  member  of  the  household 
was  "Tinker,"  a  warlike  and  intrepid  dog,  and  one  day  Tinker  ap- 
peared in  a  neck  of  the  woods  and  made  some  history.  It  was  a 
psychological  moment  in  the  life  of  Coombs  as  a  very  much  grown 
grizzly  very  much  intent  on  chewing  up  the  man  had  him  prostrate 
on  the  ground.  It  is  said  that  Tinker's  plunge  into  the  bloody  con 
flirt  was  magnificent.  A  hrindle-tinted  thunderbolt  flew  out  of  the 
adjoining  thicket  and  landed  on  the  bear's  back  just  as  that  animal 
was  stripping  large  mouthfuls  of  flesh  from  Coombs'  arm.  The 
surprised  grizzly  turned  to  attend  to  the  waspish  attack  on  his  hack. 
and  the  fallen  man  was  enabled  to  drag  himself  away.  Tinker 
slipped  down  to  the  rear  of  his  huge  foe  and  got  a  good  nip  on  that 
portion  of  its  body.  Then  the  bear  began  the  whirl — literally  chas- 
ing his  own  tail,  while  Tinker,  maintaining  his  grip,  was  swung 
around,  now  in  the  air,  now  on  the  ground,  inflicting  all  the  pain  he 
could,  chewing  up  bear,  howling  in  frenzy,  but  careful  to  keep  clear 
of  those  awful  jaws  and  claws.  The  heroic  Tinker  might  have  fared 
badly  in  the  end,  but  the  rifles  of  his  friends  relieved  him  from  a 
dilemma. 


30  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER  VIII 
EARLY  TIMES  IN  TULB  TOWN 

The  marriage  of  Nathan  Coombs  with  Elizabeth  Gordon,  or 
Belle  Gordon,  a  daughter  of  the  pioneer,  was  the  first  matrimonial 
alliance  between  whites  in  this  portion  of  the  Great  Valley.  As  only 
Sutter  in  that  part  of  the  territory  could  lawfully  join  them  to- 
gether, they  mounted  their  horses  and  rode  twenty-seven  miles 
through  the  wild  country.  After  the  Captain,  in  accordance  with 
the  laws  of  Mexico,  had  tied  the  two  into  one,  hard  and  fast,  they 
remounted  their  horses,  recrossed  the  Sacramento  river,  and  then 
this  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Lochinvar  Coombs  rode  back  into  "the  west,"  to 
their  home  on  Cache  creek,  making  fifty-four  miles  that  day.  It 
was  late,  the  Gordon  household  were  asleep,  but  the  young  "Nath 
Coombs"  couple  ate  their  wedding  supper  out  of  the  cupboard  and 
were  satisfied  though  tired.  In  after  years  portions  of  the  Gordon 
family  moved  farther  west  and  into  Napa  county  and  we  see  Gor- 
don Valley  named  from  this  people.  July  30,  1912,  Joseph,  one  of 
the  sons  of  William  Gordon,  died  at  his  home  in  the  Valley,  where 
he  was  well  and  favorably  known.  The  Coombs  of  Napa,  prominent 
citizens  of  that  county,  are  of  that  memorable  union  in  Sutter's 
Fort  in  the  fall  of  '44,  William  Gordon  Coombs  being  the  first  birth. 
A  notable  contemporary  of  these  early  Yoloites  was  Joe  R.  Wolfs- 
kin, who  lived  on  Puto  or  Putah  creek,  but  his  cabin  was  on  the 
southern  or  Solano  shore  of  the  stream. 

THE  LOST  KNIGHT  EANCHO 

About  that  time  the  Berryessa  Brothers,  Californians,  obtained 
grants  to  what  is  now  known  as  Berryessa  valley,  also  that  nine 
square  Leagues  of  land  along  the  "Jesus  Maria"  river,  now  known 
as  Cache  creek.  This  is  the  grant  of  the  Canada  de  Capay.  On  this 
date  Knight  received  his  grant  of  ten  league,  and  of  which  raucho 
the  papers  could  not  be  found  for  confirmation  by  the  United  States 
Land  Commission  after  his  death.  Like  all  lands  originally  owned 
by  native  Californians,  or  Mexicans,  the  great  Berryessa  holdings 
were  soon  held  by  strangers.  The  names  of  the  Berryessas  were 
Santiago,  Xenieeia  and  Francisco.  George  Schwartz  about  this 
time  turned  up  with  a  grant  for  three  square  leagues  along  the  west 
shore  of  the  Sacramento  where  Broderick  (or  Washington),  now 
stands.  Schwartz,  an  odd  and  somewhat  mysterious  person,  lived 
in  his  tule  cabin  among  the  Indians  there  for  several  years,  but  his 
claim  was  rejected  by  the  United  States  courts. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  31 


THE    KELSEY    HOODOO 

D.  T.  Bird  and  a  company  of  immigrants  from  Oregon  landed 
that  year  in  this  state,  and  in  this  party  was  the  Kelsey  family. 
Of  the  males  there  were  two  brothers,  David  and  Andrew;  and 
David's  sons,  Benjamin  and  Samuel;  and  misfortune  appeared  to 
mark  them  for  its  own.  David  died  with  smallpox  in  his  cabin  on 
the  site  of  Stockton  City  and  his  wife  was  blinded  by  the  same 
horrible  pestilence.  A  couple  of  hunters  found  the  dead  man  in 
his  bed,  and  the  others  of  the  family  except  one  little  girl — a 
heroine  trying  to  nurse  the  patients — helpless  with  the  disease. 
Joseph  Buzzle,  one  of  the  hunters  who  rescued  this  unlucky  house- 
hold, afterwards  married  a  Kelsey,  and  a  few  years  subsequently 
was  accidentally  drowned  in  Half  Moon  Bay,  San  Mateo  county. 
Andrew  Kelsey  was  murdered  in  his  cabin  in  Lake  county.  Kelsey- 
ville,  named  for  its  pioneer  settler,  is  on  the  site  of  this  tragedy. 
Benjamin  Kelsey  was  never  at  rest  and  never  could  escape  the 
family  had  luck.  He  began  his  Wandering  Jew  life  in  1841,  when 
with  liis  family  he  crossed  the  plains  to  California,  soon  afterwards 
moving  away  to  Oregon.  In  1844  they  again  appeared  in  Califor- 
nia, but  the  old  spirit  of  unrest  was  rampant  and  the  voice  "move 
on"  sounded  in  their  ears  and  they  started  for  their  original  eastern 
home.  Going  through  Texas  they  were  attacked  by  Indians  and 
their  daughter  Annie  killed  and  scalped.  The  family  remained  a 
short  time  in  the  east  and  then  struck  out  again  for  the  far  west, 
eventually  reaching  California  for  the  third  time.  Their  further 
wanderings  are  unknown. 

THE    PIONEER    WHEAT    PATCH 

In  the  Kelsey  party  that  reached  California  via  Oregon  in  1844 
were  D.  T.  Bird  and  Granville  Swift,  Henry  and  William  Fowler. 
W.  II.  Winter  and  William  Hargrave.  All  of  these  except  Bird 
finally  settled  in  Napa  county.  Swift  became  a  resident  of  Sonoma 
county  and  was  one  of  the  Bear  Flag  party  of  1846.  He  was  killed 
by  a  fall  from  his  mule  in  Napa  county,  where  he  was  living  at  the 
time,  in  1876.  The  era  of  cereals  on  the  western  side  of  Sacramento 
river  may  lie  said  to  have  opened  in  1845,  when  William  Gordon 
raised  about  seven  acres  of  wheat  and  five  acres  of  corn.  The  great 
grain  fields  sweeping  over  Solano,  Yolo  and  Colusa  are  evidences 
of  the  growth  of  this  golden  product.  Among  other  immigrants 
who  came  to  Gordon's  in  Capay  valley  in  1845  were  John  Grigsby, 
John  and  William  Scott  and  William  Lincoln  Todd.  John  Scott 
was  the  messenger  who  notified  Captain  Fremont  at  Sutter's  Fort 
that  Commodore  Sloat  had  hoisted  the  United  States  flag  at  Mon- 
terey. Todd  was  a  nephew  of  Mrs.  Abraham  Lincoln — whose  fam- 
ily name  is  Todd.  He  was  one  of  the  Bear  Flag  immortals,  and 
was  the  famous  artist  of  that  equally  famous  ensign,  even  if  its  bear 


32  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

did  resemble  a  pig,  and  its  lone  star  was  not  very  brilliant  or  very 
artistic.  For  many  years  Todd  was  a  resident  of  Yolo  county. 
William  R.  Roulette  and  wife,  Joseph  Davis  and  John  Sears  and 
J.  M.  Rhodes  also  settled  in  Capay.  A  grant  of  eleven  square 
leagues  of  land  lying  between  "Willows  slough  and  Puto  creek  bad 
been  issued  to  Victor  Pudon  and  Marcus  Vaca.  It  was  first  known 
as  the  Rancho  Laguna  de  Santos  Calle.  During  that  year,  1845,  the 
Colonel  Blyman  party  of  thirty-nine  persons,  among  whom  was  S. 
U.  Chase,  landed  at  the  ' '  Gordon  ranch. ' '  Mr.  Chase  soon  returned 
to  Oregon,  but  was  again  in  California  in  1848.  In  the  spring  of 
1846  James  McDowell,  a  gunsmith  living  at  Sutter's  Fort,  crossed 
the  river  and  built  a  cabin  on  what  is  now  the  site  of  Broderick,  or 
originally  Washington,  and  this  was  the  beginning  of  that  town. 
He  moved  his  family  across  to  their  new  home  and  several  of  its 
members  lived  in  the  place  for  years  after.  McDonald  was  an 
officer  in  the  California  Battalion  of  Volunteers.  He  was  assassi- 
uated  in  Sacramento  May  24,  1849,  and  died  two  davs  after. 


HISTORY    OF    YOLO    COUNTY  33 


. CHAPTER  IX 
RECRUITING  THE  BEAR  FLAG  PARTY 

While  the  pioneers  from  over  the  eastern  and  northern  moun- 
tians  were  settling-  on  the  rich  Yolo  plains  a  crisis  was  due  further 
south.  About  June  1  Antonio  Armijo  from  Suisun  valley  came  up 
through  the  Capay  in  search  of  Indian  laborers  for  grain  fields.  It 
had  grown  the  custom  to  employ  these  natives  to  harvest  the  crops. 
The  employment,  however,  was  generally  forced  upon  them,  as  the 
California  Indian  of  that  early  period  was  not  known  to  yearn  for 
a  job.  The  Indians  were  rounded  up  and  herded  into  the  field  and 
some  work  gotten  out  of  them.  Armijo  and  several  of  the  Yolo 
farmers  were  seeking  among  the  rancherias  for  their  harvesters 
when  Capt.  Ezekiel  Merritt  and  several  companies  came  through  the 
valleys  on  a  secret  mission.  Most  of  the  ranchers  in  Armijo 's  band 
of  "harvesters"  joined  Merritt  and  they  took  up  their  march 
through  Napa  county,  where  they  received  additions  to  their  party, 
on  their  way  to  the  pueblo  of  Sonoma.  This  company,  which  now 
numbered  thirty-three  persons,  mounted  and  well  armed,  was  com- 
posed of  the  following: 

From  Sacramento  valley — Ezekiel  Merritt,  Dr.  Robert  Semple, 
Henry  L.  Ford,  Samuel  Gibson,  Granville  P.  Swift,  William  Dickey. 
Henry  Booker,  John  Potter,  W.  B.  Ide,  William  Fallon,  W.  M. 
Scott,  Henry  Beason,  William  Anderson,  J.  A.  Jones,  W.  Barti  and 
Samuel  Neal. 

From  Napa  valley — John  Grigsby,  Frank  Grigsby,  Benjamin 
Dewell,  Harvey  Porterfield,  W.  B.  Elliott,  Ah  Elliott,  William 
Knight,  David  Hudson  , Franklin  Bedwell,  Joseph  Wood,  William 
Hargrave,  Andrew  Kelsey,  J.  If.  Kelly,  John  Gibbs,  Pat  McChris- 
tian,  John  Gibbs,  Thomas  Cowie  and  George  Fowler. 

THE  CALIFORNIA  REPUBLIC 

Early  on  the  morning  of  June  14,  1846,  they  rode  quietly  into 
the  Sonoma  plaza  and  awoke  Gen.  M.  G.  Vallejo,  the  comandante, 
This  officer,  also  his  brother,  Capt.  Salvador  Yallejo;  Col.  Yictor 
Pudon,  both  of  the  Mexican  army;  Julio  Carrillo  and  Jacob  Leese, 
two  brothers-indaw  of  Yallejo,  were  made  prisoners  of  war  ami  con- 
veyed to  Sutter's  Fort.  No  other  Mexican  or  Californian  soldiers 
were  found  and  immediately  the  captors  organized  the  "California 
Republic,"  with  the  celebrated  Bear  Flag  as  their  national  ensign. 

This  movement  had  its  beginning  when  Lieutenant  Gillespie,  a 
United  States  marine  officer  sent  from  Washington,  met  Capt.  John 
C.  Fremont  ("Pathfinder"),  the  well-known  United  States  sur- 
veyor, near  the  northern  end  of  the  state.     The  messenger,  whose 


34  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

mission  and  journey  had  been  accomplished  in  the  greatest  secrecy, 
had  made  his  way  in  disguise  across  Mexico  from  Vera  Cruz  to 
Mazatlan,  then  up  the  coast  to  Monterey  in  a  war  vessel,  the  com- 
mander of  which  did  not  know  the  object  of  Gillespie's  visit  to  the 
Pacific.  The  text  of  the  secret  dispatches  to  Fremont  has  never 
been  made  public,  but  from  his  subsequent  action  it  is  supposed  that 
he  was  instructed,  at  his  own  discretion,  to  forestall  any  act  in  Cali- 
fornia or  Mexico  or  the  European  governments  that  would  be 
inimical  to  the  interests  of  the  United  States 

FREMONT,    THE    PATHFINDER 

That  Fremont,  a  mere  engineer  officer,  should  be  selected  for  a 
secret  work  of  this  import,  a  work  that  not  only  might  ruin  him 
officially,  but  might  involve  his  country  in  a  conflict  with  foreign 
powers,  may  be  explained:  He  not  only  had  proven  himself,  in  sit- 
uations that  try  the  metal  of  a  man,  to  be  courageous,  patriotic  and 
judicious,  but  lie  was  the  son-in-law  of  United  States  Senator  Ben- 
ton, one  of  the  strong  men  of  the  administration,  and  while  this 
family  influence  doubtless  played  some  part  in  the  selection,  such 
selection  was  proven  a  good  one,  and  the  work  was  carried  out  as 
required,  Fremont,  in  obedience  to  these  instructions,  immediately 
turned  back  from  his  line  of  survey  and  aroused  the  settlers  in  the 
Sacramento  valley  to  capture  Sonoma  and  hold  it,  all  on  their  own 
initiative.  This  government  was  playing  a  "waiting  game" — wait- 
ing for  the  expected  war  with  Mexico  to  begin,  at  which  time  the 
United  States  would  possess  Alta  California.  There  was  need  of 
care  and  hurry,  as  the  foreign  fleets  were  hovering  in  the  Pacific 
guarding  the  fancied  or  alleged  interests  of  their  respective  govern- 
ments, and  even  negotiations  were  under  way  looking  to  an  English 
or  French  protectorate  on  this  coast.  A  direct  intervention  here  by 
the  United  States  prior  to  a  declaration  of  war  between  Mexico  and 
this  government  would  be  a  signal  for  intervention  by  Great  Brit- 
ain, whose  warships  were  watching  every  move  of  our  own.  An  in- 
surrection by  settlers  within  the  territory  could  not  be  attributed  to 
the  United  States,  yet  might  act  as  a  deterrent  to  other  powers. 

"EL  OSO"  OVER  SONOMA 

Captain  Merritt's  party  would  have  preferred  the  American 
flag  as  the  ensign  of  their  new  republic,  but  had  been  advised  by 
Fremont  of  the  indiscretion  of  such  action,  they  being  without  gov- 
ernmental authority.  Hence  the  Bear  Flag.  This  historical  ensign 
was  a  square  of  white  sheeting  furnished  by  Mrs.  John  Sears  and  a 
strip  of  red  flannel  sewed  to  its  lower  edge,  and  William  Lincoln  Todd 
did  the  rest.  He  found  a  can  of  red  paint,  a  package  of  lampblack 
and  was  ready.  Near  the  center  of  the  cloth  he  laboriously  drew 
the  outlines  of  what  he  believed  to  be  a  bear,  and  filled  it  in  with 


HISTORY   OF    YOLO   COUNTY  35 

paint  and  lampblack.  The  bear — El  Oso — was  leisurely  walking 
across  the  flag  and  had  a  very  mild  expression  on  its  face,  as  if  it 
were  looking  for  a  berry  patch.  In  an  upper  corner  of  the  cloth 
Todd  painted  a  "lone"  five-point  star,  and  below  the  bear  he  placed 
the  words  ' '  California  Republic. ' ' 

William  B.  Ide,  of  the  Sacramento  valley  portion  of  the  com- 
pany, was  selected  as  commander  at  Sonoma  and  the  American  set- 
tlers in  that  portion  of  the  territory  joined  Fremont  and  began  a 
campaign  against  General  Castro,  the  Californian  commander. 
Commodore  Sloat  with  his  fleet  of  several  United  States  war- 
ships at  Monterey  was  waiting  anxiously  for  news  from  Washington 
or  Mexico  which  would  advise  him  of  the  situation.  As  a  matter  of 
fact,  the  two  republics  were  then  at  war,  but  Sloat  did  not  know  it. 
So  he  continued  to  wait  and  watch  and  the  British  fleet  was  waiting 
and  watching  the  situation  and  him.  When  he  heard  of  the  capture 
of  Sonoma,  and  Fremont's  connection  with  that  military  movement, 
he  concluded  that  the  government  surveyor  must  have  later  news 
than  had  reached  Monterey,  and  that  the  expected  war  was  on.  This 
moved  the  over-cautious  naval  officer  to  action  and  July  7,  1846, 
he  raised  his  flag  over  the  town  and  California  passed  to  the  United 

states-  1729173 

THEN    THE    STARS    AND    STRIPES 

Sloat  then  ordered  Commander  John  B.  Montgomery,  of  the 
United  States  sloop-of-war  "Portsmouth,"  at  San  Francisco  (then 
Yerba  Buena),  to  do  the  same.  Montgomery  took  possession  of  the 
town  and  harbor  and  sent  Lieut.  Joseph  W.  Revere  of  his  vessel  to 
Sonoma,  where,  July  9,  he  lowered  the  Bear  Flag  and  hoisted  the 
United  States  ensign.  He  also  enlisted  the  Sonoma  company  into 
the  California  Battalion,  U.  S.  A.  Captain  Sutter  at  New  Helvetia, 
as  he  called  his  fort  and  settlement  on  the  Sacramento,  hoisted  the 
American  flag  July  11.  The  other  garrisoned  places  in  the  territory 
changed  flags  during  August,  and  the  final  surrender  of  the  Mexican 
forces  to  General  Fremont  took  place  near  Los  Angeles,  Januarv 
12,  1847. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER  X 
JONAS   SPECT  AND   HIS   RIVER   .METROPOLIS 

At  the  opening  of  the  year  1848  Yolo,  or  the  locality  now  Yolo 
county,  had  about  thirty  settlers  who  were  steadily  establishing  their 
permanent  homes,  increasing  their  farm  stock  and  acreage  of  grain 
lands.  But  the  discovery  of  gold  checked  for  the  time  this  agricul- 
tural growth.  James  W".  Marshall  digging  a  water  ditch  for  Sut- 
ter's new  sawmill  at  Coloma  on  the  south  fork  of  the  American 
river,  uncovered  the  yellow  metal.  Marshall  and  Sutter  at  first 
tried  to  keep  the  find  a  secret,  but  that  task  was  too  large,  and  soon 
the  world  knew  of  it  and  the  would-be  miners  from  all  points  of  the 
compass  were  hurrying  to  the  new  Eldorado.  Among  the  settlers 
in  the  state  who  dropped  all  other  work  and  joined  the  rush 
towards  Coloma  were  the  Yoloites  and  for  a  time  the  ranches  of 
that  locality  may  be  said  to  he  depopulated.  Rich  placer  mines 
were  soon  developed  along  the  rivers,  principally  because  these 
streams  afforded  better  means  of  transportation.  Hence  towns  and 
trading  posts  on  these  lines  of  travel  seemed  to  be  the  practical 
thing.  In  March,  1849,  Jonas  Spect  freighted  a  schooner  in  San 
Francisco  and  ascended  the  Sacramento  seeking  a  site  for  his  pro- 
posed city.  It  was  to  be  "Fremont,"  in  honor  of  the  Pathfinder 
and  great  surveyor-soldier  of  the  Pacific  slope.  As  he  was  twenty 
days  reaching  Sacramento  one  may  realize  the  difficulties  of  the 
early  navigation  of  this  river.  He  was  several  days  more  getting 
t<>  ln<  destination,  which  was  on  the  Yolo  shore  opposite  the  mouth 
of  the  Feather  river,  and  this  was  Fremont. 

I'RKMONT    AT    THE    FORKS    OF    THE    KIVER 

The  store  and  hotel  which  Spect  quickly  erected  was  built  of 
willows,  tules  and  cam-as,  hut  it  was  the  beginning  of  business.  For 
a  time  the  young  riparian  metropolis  was  promising.  It  seemed 
that  it  would  premanently  he  the  head  of  navigation  on  the  Sacra- 
mento. Parties  bound  for  the  placer  mines  passed  through  the  city, 
and  with  the  help  of  the  Indians  a  ferry  was  established.  Feather 
river,  having  a  sandbar  at  its  mouth,  was  fordable  here,  conse- 
quently teamsters  and  packers  could  go  in  any  direction.  The  pop- 
ularity of  Fremont  grew  by  leaps  and  bounds.  Such  prominent  men 
as  Sain  P>rannan,  William  McD.  Howard  and  Lieutenant  Maynard. 
and  others  well  known  in  the  early  history  of  this  state,  were 
visitors  there.  Howard,  representing  a  large  commercial  firm  in 
San  Francisco,  offered  Spect  and  his  partner,  T.  B.  Winston, 
$150,000  for  their  townsite  and  its  privileges.  Among  the  arrivals 
from  Oregon  was  a  Presbyterian  parson.  Rev.  John  E.  P.raly,  ami 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  37 

his  divine  services  during  his  stay  in  Fremont  did  much  to  temper 
the  frontier  rudeness  of  the  town.  Other  pioneer  citizens  were  Hon. 
C.  F.  Reed,  Judge  H.  H.  Hartley,  Judge  C.  P.  Hester,  I.  N.  Hoag, 
C.  H.  Gray,  afterwards  sheriff  of  the  county,  and  H.  B.  Wood,  sub- 
sequently partners  in  a  Woodland  firm,  were  merchants  in  Fremont. 
Miss  Matilda  McCord,  of  Bloomington,  111.,  probably  the  pioneer 
"school-marm"  of  the  state,  opened  a  school  that  year  ('49)  with 
all  the  infantile  Fremonters  in  attendance.  Naturally  the  drinking 
places  and  gambling  resorts  sprang  up,  as  it  were,  in  the  night,  as 
the  wagon  and  pack  trains,  overland,  came  in,  and  as  the  vessels 
made  their  way,  from  San  Francisco,  up  the  river.  A  soldier  be- 
longing to  a  company  of  United  States  Infantry,  camped  near  town, 
became  involved  in  a  quarrel  with  a  gambler  and  was  shot  dead. 
The  shooter  said  to  the  crowd:  "This  is  a  very  solemn  occasion, 
boys ;  let 's  take  a  drink. ' '  That  ended  the  matter.  In  fact,  taking  a 
drink  seemed  to  be  the  cheerful  manner  of  ending  disagreeable  mat- 
ters in  those  philosophical  days  of  '49. 

ALL  HAD   PLENTY   OF  SAND 

Having  "plenty  of  sand"  is  another  distinctly  California  ex- 
pression which  may  be  said  to  have  come  in  vogue  from  a  Fremont 
incident:  A  professional  gambler  had  pretty  well  cleaned  out  all 
who  had  tackled  him  with  the  cards,  and  D.  W  .Edson,  later  of 
Knight's  Landing,  tackled  him  with  a  new  and  novel  game.  The 
two  started  in  with  Edson  betting  in  gold  dust,  which  was  a  common 
medium  of  exchange  in  the  vicinity  of  the  mines  when  the  coin  sup- 
ply ran  low.  As  Edson  appeared  to  be  a  miner  with  much  dust, 
passing  the  winter  "in  town,"  he  was  permitted  to  win  a  good 
amount  in  the  preliminary  bets,  and  to  exhibit  some  of  his  real  gold, 
and  then  the  gambler  got  down  to  business.  Edson  soon  seemed  to 
grow  excited  over  the  first  loss,  and  hauling  from  his  pocket  a  fat 
buckskin  bag  of  dust,  swore  he  would  lose  its  contents  or  "break" 
his  opponent.  Betting  with  dust  was  done  by  the  ounce,  value  $16, 
the  weighing  out  generally  done  at  the  close  of  the  game.  The  other 
man  bet  coin,  which,  when  he  lost  Edson  pocketed,  but  as  the  un- 
opened bag  remained  in  view  on  the  table  all  appeared  safe.  After 
Edson  had  lost  about  every  ounce  the  bag  contained  he  declined  to 
continue  the  play  and  asked  the  alcalde  of  the  town  who  was  pres- 
ent to  measure  out  the  loss  to  the  winner  and  if  there  was  any  dust 
left  "just  treat  the  crowd  to  the  drinks."  Then  he  cleared  out,  while 
the  bag  was  being  opened, — and  this  was  well,  for  it  was  full  of 
sand.  Edson  had  been  betting  and  losing  sand,  ounce  by  ounce, 
occasionally  winning,  and  keeping,  good  money.  When  the  sport 
was  hunting  and  threatening  the  invisible  Edson  a  bystander  advised 
him  that  the  absentee  had  more  "sand,"  but  of  a  dangerous  kind 
and  he  had  better  let  the  matter  drop. 


HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CONSTITUTIONAL    GOVERNMENT 


The  people  were  flocking  into  the  country  and  it  was  soon  seen 
that  the  territory  could  not  kick  along  under  the  laws  of  sleepy 
Mexico,  so  a  constitutional  convention  was  called  by  General  Bennet 
Riley,  U.  S.  A.,  the  military  governor.  The  territory  was  divided 
into  ten  districts,  Sonoma  district,  to  which  Yolo  was  attached,  em- 
bracing all  the  country  north  of  the  bays,  east  of  the  ocean,  west  of 
the  Sacramento  river  and  south  of  Oregon.  By  an  election  August 
1,  General  Yallejo,  Dr.  Semple  and  J.  P.  Walker,  all  residents  of 
Pueblo  Sonoma,  were  elected  delegates  to  the  convention  which  was 
held  in  Monterey.  At  the  adjournment  of  this  body  Governor  Riley 
called  an  election  for  the  adoption  of  this  constitution,  and  for  the 
election  of  a  legislature  in  accordance  with  its  provisions.  The  gov- 
ernor's proclamation  for  the  election  November  15  designated  as 
polling  places  only  those  that  had  been  used  in  the  constitutional 
convention  election.  The  ambitious  city  of  Fremont  now  made  her 
debut  in  politics  and  selected  her  first  citizen,  Jonas  Spect,  for  the 
State  Senate.  He  received  one  hundred  and  one  votes  in  that  place, 
while  his  opponent  received  one  vote.  Other  places  in  what  is  now 
Yolo  and  Colusa  gave  Spect  a  large  majority  which  his  opponent, 
M.  G.  Yallejo,  appears  to  have  overcome  in  other  parts  of  the  dis- 
trict, namely,  Sonoma,  Benicia  and  Napa.  Mr.  Spect  took  his  seat 
in  the  Senate  and  G.  W.  Crane  in  the  Assembly,  but  as  the  result 
of  the  contest  they  were  unseated,  it  appearing  that  the  correct  re- 
turns gave  Vallejo  and  Bradford  majorities.  It  was  also  contended 
that  the  Fremont  vote  was  not  legal,  not  being  named  as  a  polling 
place  in  the  election  call.  J.  E.  Brackett  was  the  other  Assembly- 
man from  the  district.  Next  year  G.  W.  Crane  was  again  a  candi- 
date for  the  Assembly  and  was  given  a  certificate  of  election  by  the 
county  clerk,  but  was  unseated  again  by  a  vote  of  the  Assembly  and 
H.  P.  Osgood  was  the  successful  aspirant.  The  first  time  Crane 
served  one  day,  and  the  next  year  he  served  one  month  and  two  days 
in  the  Assembljr. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  39 


CHAPTER  XI 

MAPPING  THE   TULE  COUNTY 

The  first  legislature  of  California  met  December  15,  1849,  at 
San  Jose,  with  Governor  Peter  H.  Burnett,  Independent  Democrat 
in  politics,  presiding ;  John  McDougall,  lieutenant-governor ;  George 
W.  Wright  and  Edward  Gilbert,  representatives  in  Congress.  A 
part  of  the  business  of  the  session  was  staking  off  the  first  batch  of 
counties,  and  then  Yolo — or  Yola,  the  first  legislators  called  her — 
got  an  official  title.  About  all  they  knew  of  that  locality  was  of  its 
vast  spread  of  tules  growing  along  the  western  shore  of  the  big  cen- 
tral river,  and  "tule"  was  the  English  version  of  the  Spanish  word 
"tulare,"  or  "tular, "  and  the  Indians,  trying  to  imitate  the  white 
people,  sounded  it  like  "Yolar."  Of  course,  it  can  be  seen  that  Yolo 
and  Tulare  counties  gather  their  titles  from  the  same  bunch  of 
water-plants. 

THE  SQUAW  SCEATCHEES 

Colusa,  another  county  mapped  out  by  this  busy  body  of  legis- 
lators, owes  its  name,  according  to  the  late  Will  S.  Green,  to  a  pe- 
culiar and  interesting  custom.  In  accordance  with  a  tribal  custom  a 
bride  had  the  sacred  privilege  of  scratching  her  new  husband's  face, 
and  it  seems  that  the  young  squaws  availed  themselves  so  enthu- 
siastically of  the  pleasure  that  the  buck-hubbies  were  easily  identi- 
fied by  the  deep  scratches,  and  afterward  by  the  scars  on  their 
faces.  The  tribe  among  the  Indians  became  known  as  the  ' '  scratch- 
ers,"  or  in  their  tongue,"  the  "Colusas,"  proving  that  even  among 
the  stolid  California  Diggers  there  could  be  found  a  living  sense  of 
fitness  if  not  humor. 

FBEMONT  THE  COUNTY  SEAT 

Fremont,  the  only  town  or  any  place  in  the  county,  was  made 
the  county  seat.  Yolo  was  in  the  eighth  judicial  district,  which  was 
composed  of  this  county,  Sutter  and  Yuba,  and  September  2,  1850, 
Judge  W.  R.  Turner  held  court  at  Fremont.  An  act  passed  by  the 
legislature  in  1850  divided  the  state  into  senatorial  districts,  and 
making  Yolo,  Marin,  Sonoma,  Napa,  Solano,  Mendocino,  Colusa  and 
Trinity,  the  eleventh  district.  Another  act  (March  2,  1850)  pro- 
vided for  the  election  of  county  officers,  and  P.  A.  Marguam  was 
chosen  county  judge,  and  B.  Frank  Brown,  county  clerk.  The  ad 
also  provided  for  a  court  of  sessions  composed  of  the  county  judge 
and  two  justices  of  the  peace,  the  latter  officers  in  Yolo  being  Ferdi- 
nand Woodward  and  L.  B.  Austin.  At  the  August  term  of  this 
court  of  sessions  held  in  Fremont  the  salary  of  the  county  judge 
was  lixed  at  $4000  per  annum. 


40  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

The  famous  pioneer  period  of  '49  and  '50  brought  to  Yolo  her 
share  of  the  immigration,  notwithstanding  the  visiting  correspond- 
ent of  a  New  York  journal  had  ranked  this  county  "among  the  bar- 
ren, worthless  sections  of  the  state;"  it  was  then  believed  that  no 
considerable  portion  of  California  could  be  made  available  for  agri- 
cultural purposes.  Among  these  early  citizens  were  W.  J.  Frierson 
and  A.  Griffith,  who  landed  on  Cache  creek;  "Uncle"  John  Morris,  a 
Kentuckian,  though  "from  Missouri,"  housed  his  family  in  a  log- 
cabin  on  the  since  historic  stream  above  the  log  home  of  Thomas 
Cochran ;  next  year  Morris  relocated  himself  on  the  site  of  the  pres- 
ent county  seat.  Thomas  Adams  established  himself  and  family 
below  Cacheville,  and  the  wedding  of  his  daughter  Jane  to  J.  M. 
Harbin  during  the  early  part  of  1850  was  the  first  marriage  in  the 
county.  Harbin  and  Archibald  Jesse  lived  about  one  mile  southeast 
of  the  Woodland  site.  Knight's  Landing,  which  was  then  trying  to 
be  something  under  the  burdensome  name  of  "Baltimore,"  was  ac- 
cumulating a  small  population,  while  Washington,  afterwards  re- 
named Broderick,  was  coming  into  being.  J.  C.  Davis  and  J.  B.  and 
Kit  Chiles  had  established  a  rope  ferry  between  the  place  and  Sac- 
ramento aud  this  gave  people  an  opportunity  to  cross  and  re-cross, 
and  the  tariff  was  $6  per  man  and  team.  Peter  McGregor,  Fred- 
erick Babel,  Col.  J.  H.  Lewis,  Presley  Welch,  J.  N.  Peck,  J.  M. 
Kelley  and  Archie  McDowell  were  a  part  of  the  citizenry  of  Washing- 
ton. The  one  hundred  and  sixty-acre  tracts  along  the  river  were 
being  rapidly  taken  up  and  the  claimants  were  chopping  wood  and 
selling  it  to  the  steamers  at  $10  a  cord. 

EARLY  ELECTION  CAMPAIGNS 

Mention  has  been  made  in  these  pages  of  the  appointment  of 
officers  after  the  counties  were  formed.  ,  The  records  of  those  early 
selections  are  incomplete  or  vague,  but  there  is  no  doubt  that  the 
elections  were  orderly,  lawful  and  "straight."  It  appears  that 
George  W.  Tyler,  afterwards  member  of  the  legislature  from  Ala- 
meda, and  a  prominent  attorney  in  that  portion  of  the  state,  was 
the  first  sheriff  of  Yolo  county.  Tyler's  election  and  subsecpient 
resignation  are  characteristic  incidents  of  the  time.  He  started  in 
the  campaign  as  a  candidate  for  county  clerk,  and  James  H.  Allen, 
afterwards  adjutant  general  under  Governor  Haight,  was  running 
for  sheriff.  The  two  candidates  were  making  the  campaign  to- 
gether, swapping  confidences,  until  Tyler  learned  that  Allen  was 
secretly  supporting  another  man  for  the  clerkship,  and  this  report 
made  him  so  furious  that  he  jumped  the  clerkship  race  and  an- 
nounced himself  a  candidate  for  sheriff.  He  made  such  an  active 
campaign  that  he  beat  Allen  at  the  polls.  Sheriff  Tyler  had  the  sat- 
isfaction of  defeating  his  faithless  friend,  but  the  office  brought  him 
little  profit.     He  served  a  few  months  and  quit,  heading  for  the 


HISTOEY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  41 

mines.  The  trouble,  according  to  his  own  statement,  tersely  made, 
was  "there  were  more  cattle-thieves  than  there  was  gold  dust  to  pay 
for  hunting  them."  The  county  was  moneyless  and  his  salary  was 
so  far  in  arrears  that  it  was  long  out  of  sight.  In  1861  Tyler  was 
county  judge  of  San  Joaquin  county. 

THE    COUNTY    GEOWS   APACE 

That  the  county  was  growing,  the  assessment  rolls  of  1850  on 
country  property  alone,  show  as  follows : 

Gordon's  Grant,  two  leagues $11,000 

Hardy  Grant,  six  leagues 33,330 

Capay  Grant,  nine  leagues 49,994 

Heirs  of  William  Knight,  three  leagues 16,660 

Matthews  and  Bashman,  five  leagues 26,975 

Chiles   and  Baldridge 1,600 

$139,659 

Improvements  of  same 3,510 

Personal  property  159,862 


Total  property  assessed $303,031 

The  state  tax  was $1348.51 

State  poll  tax,  at  $5  per  head 375.00 

Total  state  tax $1723.51 

County  tax  assessed $674.26 

County  poll  tax,  at  $2.50  per  head 187.50 


Total   county   tax $861.76 

An  old  record  of  county  treasurer's  receipts  of  that  time  gives 
the  following: 

For  retail  licenses,  $327.09;  merchants'  licenses,  $35;  ferry 
licenses,  $500;  fines,  $500;  taxes,  $432.23;  total,  $1,794.42.  By  this 
it  may  be  seen  that  ferry-boats  and  law-breakers  contributed  con- 
siderable "dust"  to  the  earnings  of  the  county. 

ON   THE   EARLY   TAX   ROLLS 

One  hundred  names  from  the  ancient  tax  rolls  will  tend  to  show 
who-was-who,  or  at  least  who-was-there  in  Yolo  during  that  "spring 
of  1850,"  though  the  assessments  run  from  $1.00  to  $1.50.  Jasper 
O'Farrell,  the  pioneer  surveyor  of  the  territory,  is  the  heaviest  tax- 
payer, being  down  for  $312,461/.,  and  Woodward  &  Brooks,  seventy- 
five  cents.    The  list  is  as  follows : 

Levi  B.  Austin,  Austin  &  Co.,  J.  L.  Armstrong,  Albert  Angus- 


42  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

tine,  E.  S.  Anderson,  James  Allen,  "William  Baldridge,  William 
Brown,  S.  W.  Brown,  Gabriel  Brown,  B.  F.  Brown,  J.  E.  Braly,  D. 
T.  Bird,  W.  Bryant,  William  Brooks,  M.  T.  Coon,  Campbell  & 
Wood,  Mattbew  Wood,  J.  Callahan,  Francis  Clark,  Captain  Church- 
ill, J.  G.  Crow  &  Co.,  C.  F.  Collins,  G.  W.  Crane,  John  Carter,  Chiles 
&  Baldridge,  Thomas  Cochran,  George  Chappel,  Lewis  Duval, 
George  Durrant,  Benjamin  Devoe,  J.  C.  Davis,  D.  W.  Edson,  Abel 
Endy,  W.  J.  Frierson,  Fall,  Anderson  &  Co.,  W.  Gordon,  William 
Hammond,  Elias  Hibbs,  Edward  Hopkins,  O.  W.  Homes,  C.  P.  Hes- 
ter, John  Howard,  James  Heath,  I.  D.  Hoppe,  H.  H.  Hartley,  J.  M. 
Harbin,  H.  &  R.  Haines,  Willis  Jenkins,  Johnson  &  Shannon,  S.  M. 
Johnson,  William  Knight  Estate,  Nathan  Lord,  T.  W.  Latham,  I.  H. 
Lewis,  I.  H.  Lippard  &  Co.,  A.  R,  Lovel,  Patrick  McGill,  A.  Mclnnis, 
Orin  Miles,  William  Malloway,  James  Moore,  W.  Matkeney,  Robert 
Mcllwain,  Matthews  &  Bashman,  P.  A.  Marquam,  John  Morris,  Sam- 
uel Newhall,  Jasper  O'Farrell,  Seabury  Pierce,  J.  N.  Peck,  C.  F. 
Reed,  J.  Richardson,  Jonas  Spect,  William  Scott,  U.  H.  Stewart, 
Abel  Stewart,  Charles  Stewart,  Charles  Smith,  William  Spurk,  G. 
D.  Stevens,  Samuel  Tristin,  J.  L.  Woods,  S.  C.  Woods,  J.  J.  Walton, 
H.  A.  Weeks,  Woodward  &  Brooks,  Ferdinand  Woodward,  M.  M. 
Wombongh  and  Dimbar  Wheatley. 

The  total  taxes  of  these  property  people  was  $2,585.  There 
were  at  that  time  many  persons  in  the  county  whose  names  do  not 
appear  on  this  list,  and  it  is  given  here  only  as  a  record  of  some  of 
the  early  residenters. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  43 


CHAPTER  XII 

SETTLING  ALONG  THE  BIG  RIVER 

The  merchants  at  Fremont  and  other  places  in  the  vicinity  re- 
ceived their  merchandise  from  San  Francisco  by  river  steamer, 
and  the  old  freight  bills  on  the  goods  are  curiosities.  Among  the 
items  are  forty  pounds  potatoes,  $6 ;  one  sack  flour,  $10 ;  two  pounds 
lead,  thirty  cents;  pair  shears,  $1;  ten  pounds  coffee,  $6;  twenty- 
seven  pounds  dried  apples,  $10.80 ;  one  wooden  faucet,  $8 ;  one  pair 
spurs,  $16 ;  four  pounds  butter,  $3 ;  one  set  knives  and  forks,  $2.50. 
Naturally,  the  cost  of  living  was  somewhat  high,  but  the  "dust" 
was  coming  down  from  the  mines  and  prices  did  not  appear  "lofty." 
The  "feast"  at  a  Fourth  of  July  celebration  that  year  at  the  home 
of  William  Wadsworth  on  Cache  creek  was  pickled  pork,  codfish,  a 
bottle  of  pickles,  pancakes  and  molasses.  The  neighbors  had  as- 
sembled to  help  Wadsworth  build  his  log-house  and  after  they  had 
finished  they  concluded  to  be  patriotic.  Their  flag  was  a  combina- 
tion of  a  blue  blanket,  a  red  shirt  and  some  white  cloth,  but  it  was 
"the  day  we  celebrate"  and  they  truly  observed  the  time  in  the  old 
spirit  of  76.  It  must  not  lie  understood  that  these  primitive 
Yoloans  were  rude  and  rough  even  if  the  first  sheriff  did  jump  his 
job  because  it  cost  too  much  to  run  down  horse-thieves.  There  was 
a  law  making  the  theft  of  property  valued  at  $50  or  more  grand 
larceny  and  punishable  by  imprisonment  of  from  one  to  ten  years, 
or  by  death,  as  the  jury  might  decide.  The  early  records  show 
that  the  juries  of  those  times  were  given  to  pronouncing  the  ex- 
treme penalty,  and  a  man  caught  with  a  stray  horse  or  steer  in  his 
possession  had  to  get  busy  if  he  would  save  his  neck.  It  is  one  of 
the  old  stories  of  the  time  and  place  that  no  less  prominent  a  per- 
son than  Judge  J.  C.  Murphy  of  Mono  county  came  near  beinn'  a 
victim  of  a  Yolo  court,  he  being  at  that  time  a  resident  of  this 
county. 

MURPHY    WITH  IX    THE    TOILS 

One  day  while  teaming  through  the  country  his  loaded  wagon 
became  "stuck"  in  the  mud,  and  seeing  a  number  of  horses  in  a 
corral  in  the  vicinity,  harnessed  a  span  of  the  animals,  added  them 
to  his  team  and  hauled  his  outfit  from  the  mud-hole.  But  for  his 
cleverness  he  got  himself  into  a  more  serious  difficulty,  for  before 
he  conld  get  the  borrowed  team  back  into  the  corral  the  owner 
caught  him  "with  the  goods."  Murphy  tried  to  clear  himself  of  the 
felonious  accusation,  but  no  explanation  would  fit  the  case  and  a 
fierce  constable  soon  had  him  before  the  local  justice  of  the  peace, 
who  happened  to  be  William  Gordon,  the  owner  of  the  horses.     The 


44  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

prisoner  demanded  a  jury  trial,  but  the  court  decided  that  in  this 
case  there  was  no  need  of  the  delay  of  getting  a  jury,  as  the  prov- 
ince of  that  body  was  only  to  determine  the  guilt  or  innocence  of  an 
accused  person  and  here  the  court  knew  of  its  own  knowledge  that 
the  prisoner  was  guilty,  hence  the  jury  was  unnecessary.  The  con- 
stable was  then  ordered  to  take  the  prisoner  immediately  to  some 
convenient  place  and  hang  him.  Murphy's  demand  for  a  change  of 
venue  on  the  ground  of  the  court's  disqualification  was  disallowed 
and  preparations  were  being  made  for  the  prisoner's  decease  when 
Archibald  McDonald,  a  prominent  resident  of  the  county,  appeared, 
and  threw  himself  into  the  case.  His  work  was  so  full  of  energy 
that  Murphy  got  his  change  of  venue  to  another  court,  where  he  was 
discharged  from  arrest. 

GOOD  LAW  FOR  CATTLE  THIEVES 

"While  this  class  of  unswerving,  unbending  justice  occasionally 
overshot  the  mark,  it  did  much  in  those  "lawless"  times  to  win  from 
the  mixed  population  a  wholesome  respect  for  the  law.  On  the  fer- 
tile plains  and  hills  of  the  Sacramento  valley  livestock  bred  so 
rapidly  that  the  bands  roamed  almost  at  will  over  the  country, 
making  cattle-stealing  an  easy  occupation — except  when  caught  in 
the  act.  The  high  prices  paid  for  beef  encouraged  this  business,  but 
the  stock-men  would  quickly  form  themselves  into  posses  under  the 
direction  of  the  sheriff,  and  make  the  industry  unpopular.  For  the 
petty  thieving  the  common  penalty  was  flogging,  the  trials  brief  and 
the  lashes  well  laid  on.  The  stealing  of  a  calf — value  being  less 
than  $50 — generally  won  the  convicted  offender  fifty  lashes  on  the 
bare  back,  and  after  receiving  this  donation  he  usually  quit  the  busi- 
ness of  selling  veal  in  Sacramento  for  elk  meat.  Occasionally  the 
sheriff  and  his  volunteer  posse  would  "raise"  a  camp  of  cattle 
thieves  and  there  would  be  a  battle  and  when  the  rifle  smoke  had 
blown  away  generally  there  would  be  a  number  of  the  thieves  out 
of  the  business  forever.  This  method  of  disposing  of  the  cases  was 
not  unpopular,  it  being  more  deterrent  in  its  effect  on  others  and 
sooner  over  with. 

IX    THE   LIVESTOCK    DAYS 

Between  '48  and  '53  the  golden  lure  swept  floods  of  people 
into  California,  the  mining-counties  at  first  getting  not  only  the  new 
metal-mad  immigration,  but  many  of  the  settlers  in  other  parts  of 
the  state.  Yet  there  were  people  here  who  were  not  dazed  by  the 
yellow  glare  of  "the  diggings,"  and  the  ranchos  continued  to  re- 
ceive new-comers.  Some  people  were  mining  gold  on  their  agricul- 
tural claims.  A  German  settler,  it  is  related,  named  Schwartz,  sat 
on  his  doorstep  near  Sacramento,  and  saw  the  droves  of  men 
plunging  northward.     They  cheerily  called  him  to  join  the  "stam- 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  45 

pede,"  but  he  calmly  smoked  his  pipe  and  let  them  pass.  From  his 
farm  he  raised  and  sold  in  Sacramento  that  year  $30,000  worth  of 
watermelons  and  other  garden-truck.  From  the  rich,  virgin-soil  of 
this  incomparable  valley  he  grew  the  "dust."  While  in  the  aggre- 
gate California  volcanoed  out  the  golden  millions  from  her  subter- 
ranean treasury,  flashing  a  yellow  gleam  across  the  world,  the  aver- 
age individual  winnings  from  her  great  lottery  were  insignificant. 
The  production  of  her  mines  for  1853,  when  the  industry  reached 
its  highest  point,  was  about  $65,000,000,  being  to  the  100,0*00  miners 
at  work  that  year  $650  per  capita;  $54.16  monthly;  $1.80  daily — 
enough  to  buy  his  daily  bacon,  providing  he  was  a  small  eater.  The 
Schwartzs  did  better. 

So  the  harvest  of  the  mine  was  not  the  only  harvest  to  be  gath- 
ered from  this  wealth-producing  ground.  The  Spaniard  or  Mexican 
could  get  over  countless  leagues  of  land,  but  he  seldom,  if  ever,  got 
down  in  it.  If  he  farmed  he  plowed  with  an  iron-pointed  tree- 
branch  that  scratched  the  soil-surface,  and  then  harrowed-in  the 
seed  with  the  top  of  the  tree  that  supplied  the  plow.  After  this  he 
rolled  a  corn-husk  cigarette  and  left  the  crop  to  fight  it  out  with  the 
weeds  or  drought  as  the  weather  might  be.  As  this  manner  of 
plowing  and  sowing  encouraged  the  growth  of  the  most  backward 
weed,  only  the  most  propitious  season  produced  anything  in  the  way 
of  a  crop.  So  the  Mexican  colonist  left  it  all  "a  nianana,"  to  the 
morrow,  and  if  he  raised  enough  corn  for  his  tamales,  enough  wheat 
for  his  tortillas  and  enough  peppers  for  his  chile  con  carne  against 
the  coming  of  the  meal  hour,  that  was  as  far  as  he  ventured  into 
the  vast  plant  possibilities  under  and  around  him. 

THE   PADRES   FAEMED  A  LITTLE 

The  mission  padres  striving  to  vary  and  improve  the  fare  of 
their  retainers  and  converts  planted  slips  of  grape  vines  and  fruit 
trees  around  the  big  adobe  buildings.  But  the  infant  industry  lan- 
guished. The  Californian  could  take  the  wine  in  light  or  heavy 
doses,  but  peaches,  apples  or  even  oranges  did  not  appeal  to  his 
peculiar  taste  for  food — or  labor,  and  the  few  trees  of  that  noble 
citrus  planted  at  the  Mission  San  Gabriel  in  1851  did  not  grow  in 
increase — or  favor.  While  the  mulberry  and  the  silk  industry  did 
not  get  to  the  early  agriculturist  of  California,  the  tree  grows  rap- 
idly and  strong  here.  Several  years  ago  the  legislature,  to  en- 
courage sericulture,  placed  a  bounty  of  $250  on  every  5,000  mul- 
berry trees  two  years  old.  It  thus  encouraged  it  with  a  vengeance, 
and  only  the  repeal  of  the  act  saved  the  state  from  bankruptcy. 
Then  the  ten  millions  of  trees  in  Southern  California  fell  into  in- 
nocuous desuetude  and  the  silk  worms  in  the  trees  fell  into  the 
English  sparrows,  one  of  California's  unlucky  importations  which 


46  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

must  be  endured  until  somebody  imports  something-  to  eat  the  spar- 
rows. 

INDIANS   AND    OTHER   STOCK 

With  the  first  missionary  expeditions  to  the  Pacific  coast  came  the 
Spanish  horses,  cattle  and  sheep.  These  animals  were  turned  out  on 
the  wide  plains  and  mesas  to  luxuriate  in  the  mild  climate  and  rich 
vegetation  and  become  the  countless  herds  of  the  great  ranchos. 
No  attempt  was  made  to  improve  the  breed,  as  a  steer  was  worth 
only  the  little  the  hide  on  his  carcass  and  the  tallow  within  it  would 
bring  after  shipping  them  around  the  Horn  to  an  Atlantic  port; 
and  a  blue-ribbon  bovine  would  bring  no  more.  Milk  and  butter 
were  unknown  in  a  ranchero's  home,  as  a  Spanish  cow  with  a  young- 
calf  around  to  excite  her  maternal  solicitude  was  about  as  safe  for 
dairy  purposes  as  a  female  panther.  The  vaquero  aboard  his  mus- 
tang— and  that  animal  almost  as  wild  as  the  cow — was  afraid  of 
nothing  that  wore  hoofs,  but  dismount  him  to  do  the  milking,  even 
with  the  fighting-mad  raca  roped  and  tied,  would  place  him  at  a  dis- 
advantage. So  she  was  left  in  peace  to  nourish  her  youngster  and 
bring  him  up  to  the  age  when  his  hide  and  tallow  were  fit  for  the 
shoes  and  candles  of  commerce,  and  the  rest  of  him  for  the  coyotes. 
Should  a  milk-demand  be  strong  enough  for  action,  they  milked  the 
goat.    Robbing  Nanny's  kid  was  safer. 

SHEEPSKINS   AND    SALVATION 

The  mission  fathers  used  the  sheep  in  their  scheme  of  salvation 
for  the  Indians.  The  wool  was  woven  into  a  coarse  cloth,  and  when 
the  good  padre  caught  a  "native  son"  gentle  enough  to  safely 
handle,  the  missionary  put  a  shirt  on  him  in  the  belief  that  de- 
cency is  near-godliness.  The  original  Californian  did  not  indulge  in 
clothing  except  in  the  union-suit  he  wore  after  a  rich,  sticky  mud- 
bath,  and  he  was  not  particular  about  the  fit  of  that  if  it  was  heat- 
ing in  winter  and  somewhat  cold-storage  in  summer.  In  general  he 
objected  at  any  season  to  be  made  a  fashion-plate,  and  if  the  father 
was  too  insistent,  Lo  shed  his  shirt  and  hiked  for  the  distant  ranch- 
eria.  However,  if  the  mission  bells'  call  to  prayer  and  beef  was 
louder  than  the  call  of  the  wilds,  he  tolerated — under  protest — his 
shirt,  which  made  him  more  lousy  and  itchy, — and  stood  without 
hitching,  a  fairly  good  Injun. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  47 

CHAPTER  XIII 
WHEN  THE  MUSTANG  GALLOPED  OUT  OF  THE  TWILIGHT 

It  is  not  known  just  when  the  horse  galloped  out  of  the  pre- 
historic twilights  of  animal  creation,  or  what  was  his  disposition  at 
that  early  period,  but  judging  from  the  Mexican  mustangs  we  have 
met,  he  was  "a  bad  one."  On  second  thought,  Bronco  might  have 
come  from  his  natal  wild  with  ferocity  undeveloped,  and  his  present 
savagery  was  thrust  upon  him  or  hammered  into  him  by  humanity. 
Certainly  nothing  but  a  Mexican  horse  can  live  under  a  Mexican 
rider.  And  mount  that  vaquero,  folded  in  his  gaudy  trappings,  on  a 
vicious,  always-ready-to-buck  equine  devil  of  the  rancho,  and  a  more 
complete  and  fantastic  centaur  never  plunged  out  of  mythology. 
Consideration  for  the  horses  seems  to  have  been  unknown  among 
these  horsemen,  and  the  animal  seems  to  have  known  that  fact,  and 
lived  with  the  single  object  of  "doing  up"  his  rider.  For  this  he 
endured  abuse  and — often — semi-starvation,  climbed  almost  inac- 
cessible steeps  with  the  sure-footedness  of  a  goat,  and  kicked  the 
miles  behind  him  with  the  perseverance  of  an  express  train ;  and  all 
the  time  he  was  thinking  of  the  obligation  he  owed  man — the  obli- 
gation to  buck  him  off  and  kick  him  to  death  at  the  first  oppor- 
tunity; and  this  debt  he  always  tried  to  pay.  With  the  coming  of 
the  Americano  came  the  draught  horse — colossal  and  splendid,  and 
the  antithesis  of  the  seemingly  frail  little  cayuse  that  followed  the 
wild  cattle  trails.  Also  came  the  thoroughbred,  every  ripple  of  his 
blueblood  showing  under  his  silken  coat,  with  the  pride  of  his  Arab- 
ian lineage  in  the  swing  of  his  dainty  heels — a  far  remove  from  the 
shaggy-haired,  hoof-worn,  half-starved  wild  thing  of  the  western 
range. 

here's  to  you,  tough  broxco! 

But  with  all  this  class  distinction,  here's  to  you,  Mexican  mus- 
tang. You  look  tough,  you  act  tough,  you  are  tough,  but  you  came 
into  Old  Spain  with  Moorish  knighthood  and  you  shared  the  glory 
of  your  warrior-rider.  You  are  now  a  poor,  humble,  despised  bronc, 
but  your  patent  to  nobility  goes  back  to  the  golden  days  of  Good 
Haroun  Al  Raschid! 

THE   DAIRY    QUEEN    FROM    OVER-SEAS 

And  the  day  of  the  tigerish  cow  of  Spain  was  ended  when  the 
mild  queen  of  the  dairy  from  over  the  seas — from  Holstein,  Durham 
and  Jersev — came  to  create  and  run  a  local  milk  route.    The  short- 


48  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

horns  and  the  no-horns  cropped  the  clover-blooms  and  oaten-heads 
on  the  ranges  for  the  newer  Californian. 

The  first  American  cattle  found  their  way  into  the  new  terri- 
tory as  the  motive  power  of  the  "prairie  schooners,"  and  when 
they  were  unyoked  from  these  immigrant  wagons  they  had  their 
price  either  for  beef  or  hauling  freight  into  the  mines.  Driving 
bands  of  American  cows  and  horses  across  the  plains  to  thrive  and 
increase  in  the  rich  pasturage  of  these  fenceless  valleys  became  an 
industry  that  has  grown  with  the  years. 

THE   USEFUL   HYBKID    MULE 

Another  pioneer  beast  of  burden,  the  mule,  has  played  an  im- 
portant part  in  the  livestock  wealth  of  the  Pacific  slope.  This 
sturdy  and  exceedingly  useful  animal  came  to  this  coast  with  the 
black  Spanish  cattle  and  Spanish  mustang,  and  was  well  rated  as 
the  following  price-list  of  that  time  shows :  One  sheep,  $2 ;  one  ox, 
$5 ;  one  cow,  $5 ;  one  mare,  $5 ;  one  saddle  horse,  $10 ;  one  mule,  $10. 
As  a  saddle  horse  was  a  physical  and  moral  part  of  a  Spanish- 
Calif  ornian,  we  can  easily  see  that  the  long-eared,  homely  mule  had 
a  value  all  his  own.  As  a  team  animal  over  the  plains  and  moun- 
tains of  the  west  this  hybrid  with  his  strength  and  inexpensive  up- 
keep, has  no  equal. 

The  sheep  were  here  and  only  needed  an  American  and  a  mar- 
ket to  make  them  profitable.  Hogs  were  soon  introducd  and  the  fat 
porkers  did  not  beg  for  buyers.  In  fact,  it  is  said  that  in  1850  it 
took  many  ounces  of  gold  to  reach  the  value  of  a  full-grown  hog. 
William  Gordon  was  one  of  the  pioneer  swine-herders  and  early 
stocked  his  ranch  with  best  breeds  and  he  was  soon  able  to  supply 
other  breeders  with  a  valuable  stock.  One  hundred  to  one  hundred 
and  fifty  dollars  apiece  he  frequently  received  for  his  acorn-fed 
thoroughbreds  raised  under  the  Cache  valley  oaks.  Some  of  these 
old  stock  sales  records  are  interesting  as  reminiscent  of  those 
earlier  times.  From  one  of  them  we  learn  that  in  1855  S.  Cooper 
sold  an  ox  to  Spurk  &  Frierson  for  $100;  while  four  years  previous 
A.  Kendall  sold  to  that  firm  a  milch  cow  for  the  same  sum ;  in  1851 
Charles  Coil  bought  of  J.  M.  Harbin  1,500  Spanish  cattle  at  $18  a 
head,  and  200  saddle  horses  at  $40  a  piece ;  these  animals  must  have 
been  out  of  market-condition,  as  beef  cattle  were  selling  at  $35  per 
head,  and  a  well  broken  vaquero  horse  would  bring  $150.  J.  "\Y. 
Chiles  paid  $30  apiece  for  several  milch  cows  just  from  "across  the 
plains,"  and  sold  them,  fat  and  fresh,  in  San  Francisco  for  $175 
each,  one  of  them  being  rated  at  $250.  Charles  Coil  in  1851  went 
east  and  returned  the  following  year  with  350  choice  American 
cows.  The  next  spring  he  sold  them  with  their  young  calves  at 
from  $75  to  $250  each. ' 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  49 

THE   YOLO    HORSE   INDUSTRY 

Probably  the  pioneer  horseman  of  Y'olo  was  Dr.  H.  P.  Merritt, 
who  lived  a  few  miles  south  from  Woodland.  On  New  Year's  day, 
1851,  he  passed  through  Yrolo  county  afoot  and  exceedingly  poor  in 
cash,  driving  four  little  pack  mules  loaded  with  merchandise,  bound 
for  the  Shasta  mines.  The  next  year  Dr.  Merritt  was  buying  Amer- 
ican horses  at  all  prices  and  selling  at  an  advance.  During  1852  he 
went  east  and  brought  one  hundred  head  of  horses  back  to  Cali- 
fornia, settling  on  a  ranch  in  Yolo  county.  While  his  stock  was 
fattening  for  market  the  doctor  put  in  a  crop  of  wheat,  paying  nine 
cents  a  pound  for  the  seed.  He  raised  a  fine  harvest  of  smut  which 
cost  him  about  $4,000.  His  horses  saved  him  from  bankruptcy,  as 
he  immediately  sold  fourteen  span  to  the  California  Stage  Co.  at 
$700  a  span.  Merritt  frequently  got  $500  and  $800  apiece  for  his 
horses,  as  most  of  them  were  splendid  animals,  large  and  strong. 
In  1852-3-4  Yolo  county  was  the  prize  horse  county  of  the  state. 
During  these  years  a  number  of  thoroughbred  mares  got  into  the 
country, — such  as  "Tom  Moore,"  brought  in  '52  from  Missouri  by 
Humphrey  Cooper;  the  same  year  James  Moore  imported  two  fine 
horses,  which  he  called  "Bulwer"  and  "Lola  Montez."  Henry 
Williams  in  1854  brought  in  "Owen  Dale,"  by  Belmont,  and  dur- 
ing that  year  Carey  Barney  laid  out  a  mile  track  near  Knight's 
Landing,   where   for   years   the   fastest    horses    were    trained    and 

*  BEEF    AND    BUTTER    BUSINESS 

The  initial  dairy  in  Yrolo  county  was  located  near  Washington 
and  was  owned  by  J.  C.  Davis,  and  following  this  was  the  dairy 
established  during  the  year  1850  on  what  was  afterwards  the  Mike 
Bryte  place,  by  C.  H.  Cooley  and  Wallace  Cunningham.  The  milk 
business  paid  in  those  days,  $1  a  quart  or  $2  a  gallon  when  sold  in 
large  quantity.  As  the  dairies  were  established  the  prices  natur- 
ally went  down.  Many  of  the  dealers  along  the  river  suffered  from 
the  periodical  floods,  when  the  old  Sacramento  swept  over  her  banks 
and  washed  the  ranches,  cows  and  all  away  to  the  sea. 

The  extensive  plains  and  hill  ranges  of  Y"olo  were  stocked  with 
cattle  when  the  dry  spell  of  1857  cut  down  the  feed,  the  herds  and 
prices.  This  was  followed  by  the  cold  and  wet  winters  of  1861-2, 
which  about  completed  the  disaster.  Hundreds  of  thousands  of 
cattle  driven  from  the  lowlands  by  the  excessive  floods  wandered 
over  the  grassless  upper  lands  starving  to  death.  Stock  raisers 
went  bankrupt  and  in  many  localities  it  is  said  the  only  persons 
who  realized  a  dollar  from  the  industry  were  those  who  went 
through  the  country  skinning  the  dead  animals.  These  repeated 
disasters,  first  wet  and  then  dry,  gradually  turned  the  settlers  to 
agriculture,  to  the  possibilities  under  the  hoofs  instead  of  to  ap- 
parent probabilities  over  the  hoofs. 


50  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

CHAPTER  XIV 

THE  PASSING  OF  FREMONT 

When  Jonas  Spect  pitched  bis  tent  on  the  Sacramento  just  op- 
posite the  mouth  of  the  Feather  he  believed  the  site  was  a  favorable 
one.  A  sand-bar  at  the  meeting  of  the  two  steams  not  only  made  a 
good  ford  over  the  Feather  at  that  place,  but  prevented  that  little 
river  from  being  navigable.  These  situations  contributed  largely  to 
Fremont's  sudden  rise  and  to  her  short-lived  prosperity,  as  they 
were  subject  to  change.  The  unprecedented  floods  of  the  rainy  win- 
ters of  1851-2  cleaned  out  and  opened  up  the  rivers  in  the  Sacra- 
mento valley.  The  sand-bar  was  washed  away  from  the  mouth  of 
the  Feather  river  and  the  stream  became  navigable  far  up  into  the 
mining  section  of  the  state.  There  was  no  ford  at  Fremont  and  the 
light  draft  vessels  loaded  with  supplies  for  the  interior  could  go  by 
the  Yolo  metropolis  without  a  call  or  trans-shipment.  So  Fremont 
stood  on  her  side  of  the  river  and  saw  commerce  passing  up  both 
streams,  the  Feather  river  open  as  far  as  what  is  now  Marysville. 
Notwithstanding  an  Act  of  the  legislature  declared  Fremont  the 
county  seat,  and  the  Court  of  Sessions  declared  that  the  Yolo 
county  seat  of  justice  shall  be  at  the  same  place,  no  term  of  court 
was  held  there  after  July,  1851.  A  vote  of  the  qualified  electors  of 
the  county  at  an  election  in  March,  1851,  had  shown  a  majority 
favoring  the  town  of  "Washington,  and  the  other  place  dropping  in 
commercial  importance,  the  seat  of  the  county  government  came 
down  the  river  and  settled  just  opposite  the  present  capital  of  the 
state.  Finally  the  town  itself  passed  away,  disappeared.  Some  of 
the  buildings  were  moved  to  Knight's  Landing,  some  to  Marysville 
and  others  out  in  the  country  to  become  portions  of  the  improve- 
ments of  farms.  Presently  nothing  but  empty  lots  and  town  mem- 
ories remained  of  Fremont,  the  embryonic  river  metropolis  of  the 
Sacramento  valley. 

FROM  EARLY   COUNTY  RECORDS 

When  the  state  legislature  convened  in  January,  1852.  the  conn 
ties  of  Yolo  and  Colusa  constituted  one  senatorial  district  and  was 
represented  by  Martin  E.  Cooke.  John  G-.  Parish  represented  Yolo 
county  in  the  assembly.  In  that  year  H.  H.  Hartley  was  elected 
county  judge;  IT.  Griffith,  county  clerk;  E.  A.  Harris,  sheriff;  Alex- 
ander Chisholm,  treasurer.  John  M.  Howell  was  elected  district 
judge  of  the  eleventh  judicial  district,  which  was  composed  of  Yolo, 
Placer  and  Eldorado  counties.  The  census  of  the  state  taken  in 
1852  gave  the  population  of  Yolo  county  as  follows:  Whites,  males. 
1,085;  females,  L89;  negroes,  males,  11;  females,  3;  Indians,  males. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  51 

109;  females,  43;  total,  1,440.  In  the  matter  of  the  Indians  the 
census  probably  took  in  those  only  of  permanent  residence  in  the 
county,  as  there  must  have  been  more  than  152  left  in  all  Yolo  at 
that  early  time. 

The  towns  of  the  county  were  given  as  follows:  Washington, 
with  four  hotels,  two  stores,  three  laundries  and  a  postoffice;  Fre- 
mont, afrhotel,  a  store  and  postoffice;  Cache  Creek,  three  hotels. 
Other  towns,  Putah,  Cottonwood  and  Merritt.  In  that  same  enum- 
eration the  wealth  of  the  county  is  shown  in  the  following  list: 
Horses,  1,808;  mules,  314;  cows,  287;  beef  cattle,  9,116;  oxen,  223; 
hogs,  2,607;  sheep,  1,855;  hens,  2,244;  fish  (pickled),  2,900;  bushels 
of  barley,  126,076;  bushels  of  oats,  5,075;  bushels  of  corn,  1,310; 
bushels  of  wheat,  1,497;  bushels  of  potatoes,  11,950;  turnips,  4,010; 
cabbages,  28,400;  acres  of  land  under  cultivation,  3,846;  capital  em- 
ployed in  gardening,  $8,524;  capital  employed  in  boating,  $38,800; 
capital  employed  in  quartz  mining,  $5,800;  capital  employed  in 
other  plans,  $2,600 ;  wood  value,  $19,370 ;  tons  of  hay,  6,238. 

A   FLITTING  COUNTY   SEAT 

During  the  year  1853  Yolo  was  represented  in  the  assembly  by 
A.  B.  Caldwell,  and  the  senatorial  district  to  which  the  county  be- 
longed, by  M.  M.  Wambough.  In  the  election  of  September  that 
year  Harrison  Gwinn  of  Knight's  Landing  was  elected  county 
judge;  E.  H.  Baskett,  clerk;  J.  W.  Gish,  sheriff,  and  H.  Meredith, 
district  attorney,  these  officials  beginning  their  terms  the  following 
March.  The  county  seat  remained  at  Washington  until  1857,  when 
the  legislature  with  an  Act  dated  March  25,  which  provided  that  a 
place  on  Cache  creek  then  known  as  "Hutton's, "  but  should  be 
thereafter  known  as  Cacheville,  should  be  the  county  seat  of  Yolo 
county.  Some  years  before  this  James  A.  Hutton  had  settled  on 
this  spot  and  having  built  a  large  and  commodious  home,  the  estab- 
lishment became  known  as  Hutton's  ranch.  Then  the  hospitality  of 
Mr.  Hutton  and  his  family  made  them  so  popular  that  his  place 
won  the  more  expressive  title  of  "Traveler's  Home."  Presently  a 
postoffice  was  established  there  which  bore  the  name  of  "Yolo  Post- 
office."  Being  the  county  seat,  also  beautifully  located  in  the  midst 
of  rich  farm  lands,  Cacheville  quickly  grew  into  a  lively  town.  Tlie 
county  officials  with  their  books  and  papers,  modern  reports  as  well 
as  the  ancient  records,  were  housed  somewhere.  A  weekly  news- 
paper was  born  in  the  new  county  seat — the  Yolo  Drum,  rut — pub- 
lished by  Messrs.  Jernagan  and  Evarts,  printers,  with  Samuel  Ru- 
land,  editorial  writer.  It  died  after  about  a  year  of  living,  but  was 
soon  resurrected  as  The  Cacheville  Spectator,  with  M.  P.  Ferguson 
in  charge.     Shortly  afterward  it  was  again  dead. 

In  1859  gold  was  found  in  the  gulches  bordering  on  Putah 
creek  and  during  the  rainy  season  miners  with  the  old-fashioned 


o-2  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

rocker  made  good  wages  extracting  the  "dust."  But  iu  the  dry, 
waterless  months  nothing  could  be  done,  and  the  placers  were 
abandoned.  During  1861  Yolo  was  represented  in  the  assembly  by 
W.  S.  Wood  and  in  the  senate  by  Henry  Edgerton,  afterwards 
prominent  in  the  politics  of  this  state.  At  this  session  of  the  legis- 
lature an  Act  was  passed  returning  the  county  seat  to  Washington 
and  in  July  the  public  records  and  papers  were  taken  baA:  to  the 
river  town.  The  plant  of  the  defunct  Democrat  was  carried  to 
Knight's  Landing,  where  it  was  issued  under  the  name  of  the  News. 

WOODLAND   BORN   TJjjDER   HER  TREES 

In  1855  James  McClure  and  James  McClure,  Jr.,  established  a 
blacksmith  shop  several  miles  southeast  of  Cacheville — or  what  was 
afterwards  Hunter's,  and  later  Cacheville.  It  was  a  very  small 
shop  and  at  first  did  a  small  business,  and  its  only  claim  to  notice  is 
beeanse  it  was  the  beginning  of  the  now  beautiful  city  of  Wood- 
land. During  that  year  Henry  Wyckoff  started  a  little  merchandise 
store  near  the  McClure  shop  and  next  year  E.  R.  Moses  began  to  do 
woodwork  in  the  blacksmithing  building.  The  following  year  E.  R. 
and  A.  0.  Moses,  brothers,  bought  out  the  shop  and  built  a  number 
of  threshing  machines  which  were  sold  and  used  in  the  community. 
Joseph  Wolgamot  had  previously  become  a  partner  with  the  Mc- 
Clures.  During  the  summer  of  1857  a  saloon  and  gambling  annex 
was  established  by  a  man  whose  real  name  is  lost  to  history,  but 
whose  fictitious  title  is  remembered  to  have  been  "By-Hell," 
caused  by  his  frequent  use  of  that  class  of  strong  language.  By- 
Hell  was  too  fierce  even  for  those  early  days  and  a  grand  jury  soon 
began  to  look  up  his  record,  and  he  suddenly  disappeared,  leaving 
the  embryonic  "Woodland  saloonless  and  "dry,"  as  she  is  now. 
This  pioneer  liquor-dealer  with  the  infernal  title  seemed  to  have 
left  a  bad  impression  behind  him,  for  a  Sons  of  Temperance  lodge 
was  soon  organized  in  the  community.  A  school  house  as  well  as  a 
Masonic  hall  was  built  in  the  growing  village.  In  the  fall  of  that 
year  F.  S.  Freeman  appeared  and  bought  out  Wyckoff's  store  and 
got  a  postoffice  in  operation,  with  himself  its  first  postmaster. 

Of  course,  the  settlement  had  to  have  a  name  and  somebody 
suggested  "Yolo  City."  In  1860  Rev.  J.  N.  Pendegast  and  Rev.  J. 
Lawson.  members  of  the  Christian,  or  "  Campbellite, "  Church,  and 
living  near  Yolo  City,  began  the  establishment  of  an  educational  in- 
stitution. They  were  men  of  splendid  character,  and  by  their  en- 
ergy  and  strong  influence  with  the  people  of  the  vicinity  soon  added 
Hesperian  College  to  the  growing  town. 

WOODLAND    THE    COUNTY    SEAT 

The  time — 1862 — had  come  to  find  another  place  for  a  county 
seat.  Washington,  on  the  Sacramento  river,  despite  its  great  name 
and  favorable  situation  on  the  grand  channel  of  interior  commerce. 


FIRST   STORE   IN   WOODLAND 


FIRST    SCHOOLHOUSE    AND    MASONIC    HALL    IN    WOODLAND 


HISTORY   OF    YOLO    COUNTY  53 

was  destined  to  lose  the  county  government.  The  Yolo  town  was 
too  near  the  capital  city  of  the  State,  and  the  wooden  toll  bridge 
between  the  big  and  little  places  did  not  increase  the  little  one's 
prosperity.  Moreover,  the  county  was  filling  up  and  the  splendid 
agricultural  possibilities  of  the  middle  and  western  portions  of  the 
section  were  becoming  more  manifest.  Added  to  this  the  county 
seat  located  on  the  extreme  eastern  edge  of  the  county  was  not  con- 
venient. Yolo  City  in  her  natural  park  of  oak  trees,  a  perfect  gar- 
den spot  of  fertility,  situated  near  the  geographical  center  of  the 
county,  was  the  coming — or  standing — choice.  This  idea  finally  got 
into  visual  shape  by  the  passing  of  a  legislative  act  calling  for  an 
election  by  the  voters  of  the  county  of  Yolo  as  to  whether  the  dis- 
tinction should  remain  at  Washington  or  go  to  Woodland — Wood- 
land being  the  new  name  for  Yolo  City.  The  vote  resulted  as  fol- 
lows: Woodland  968,  Washington  778,  and,  in  accordance  with  this, 
May  10,  1862,  the  county  government  came  into  its  permanent  home 
in  the  F.  S.  Freeman  building,  under  the  trees  of  Woodland.  It  began 
at  Fremont  in  1850  and  for  about  a  dozen  years  it  had  wandered 
around  the  county — to  Washington,  Cacheville,  back  to  Washington, 
then  Yolo  City  or  Woodland.  The  first  court  house  in  Woodland 
was  located  on  First  street,  north  of  Main  street,  in  the  building 
afterwards  known  as  the  Woodland  bakery.  Of  course  the  printer 
came,  in  the  shape  and  form  of  The  Woodland  News.  It  had  been 
the  Yolo  Democrat  when  it  appeared  in  Cacheville,  and  had  been  the 
Knight's  Landing  News  when  it  was  published  at  Knight's  Landing. 
Now  it  appeared  in  the  new  county  seat  and  was  published  till  No- 
vember, 1867,  when  it  skipped  a  week  and  reappeared  as  the  Yolo 
Democrat,  literally  going  back  to  its  old  and  original  Cacheville 
name.  W.  A.  Henry,  afterward  an  attorney  and  police  judge  in 
Sacramento,  was  the  editor  during  1869.  When  the  Woodland  News 
changed  its  name  to  Woodland  Democrat  it  changed  its  politics,  and 
accordingly  0.  Y.  Hammond  was  induced  to  start  a  Republican 
paper  in  -the  town,  which  he  did  in  October,  1868,  calling  it  the  Yolo 
Weekly  Mail,  Next  year  A.  E.  Wagstaff  assumed  control  and  in 
1879  W.  W.  Theobalds  became  the  proprietor  of  the  Mail. 


54  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER  XV 
PLANTING  THE  YOLO  VALLEY  SETTLEMENTS 

As  Woodland,  the  final  county  seat  site,  gathered  and  grew 
around  her  original  building,  becoming  quickly  a  civic  adult,  so 
other  mere  settlements  became  large,  lively  towns.  The  rich,  Eden- 
like Capay  valley  drew  the  population.  It  is  a  lovely  vale,  about 
twenty  miles  long  and  one  or  one  and  a  half  miles  wide — just  as 
Cache  creek,  which  runs  through  its  entire  length,  takes  a  notion 
to  zigzag,  such  movement  of  course  being  influenced  by  the  moun- 
tain chains  on  both  sides.  Capay,  or  as  the  Indians  spoke  it — Capi 
— means  creek,  and  the  title  proves  how  important  in  so  early 
a  day  was  the  small  mountain  stream  plunging  from  gorge  to  gorge, 
from  its  Lake  county  source,  to  spread  over  the  Yolo  levels.  A 
white  population  came  to  this  fertile  sprit  and  the  settlements 
finally  acquired  names.  In  1857  a  man  named  Munch  built  a  large 
house  on  the  bank  of  Cache  creek  and  somebody  starting  a  black- 
smith shop  near  by  the  place  was  called  Munchville.  The  place 
thrived  for  about  a  year,  when  some  rancher  bought  the  entire 
town  and  moved  it  out  to  his  place.  The  abandoned  site  was 
vacant  till  1862,  when  E.  E.  Perkins  erected  a  dwelling  house  there. 
Several  years  afterwards  John  Arnold  Lang  got  into  the  settlement 
and  got  busy  putting  up  more  houses,  and  the  place  became  Lang- 
ville  January  1,  1875.  It  was  subsequently  renamed  Capay,  after 
the  grand  valley. 

IX  THE  BARE  VALE  OF  THE  CAPAY 

Other  places  such  as  Guinda,  Esparto  and  Cacheville  have 
flourished  because  of  their  locations  within  this  favored  vale.  Even 
the  names  of  the  villages  are  suggestive — Amaranth,  a  fadeless 
white  bloom ;  Sauterne,  a  rare  wine ;  and  Cashmere,  a  noble  Arabian 
valley.  Not  only  does  Capay  valley  yield  a  rich  harvest  of  all  the 
California  fruits  that  grow  on  tree  and  vine,  but  the  things  of  the 
tropics  ripen  there  as  well;  in  fact,  it  is  called  the  home  of  the 
almond,  orange  and  fig.  So  with  her  wonderful  diversity  of  soils, 
thennal  conditions  and  fertilizing  possibilities  Yolo  county  produces 
in  almost  limitless  variety.  As  a  sample  of  this  varied  production 
a  State  University  publication  recently  gave  the  following: 

"On  a  lot  in  the  town  of  Woodland,  80  feet  front  by  a  depth 
of  145  feet,  one-seventh  of  an  acre,  the  following  trees,  plants,  vines 
and  flowers  were  found  in  full  bearing — twelve  navel  orange,  one 
lemon,  one  cherry,  three  apple,  two  fig,  two  olive,  two  apricot,  four 
almond,  and  two  plum  trees,  fifty-eight  grapevines  (nine  varieties), 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  55 

plots  of  dewberries,  raspberries  and  loganberries,  fifty  varieties 
of  rosebusbes,  a  small  vegetable  garden  of  onions,  tomatoes,  lettuce, 
mint,  sage,  parsley  and  beds  of  bulbous  and  otber  flowering  plants." 
Buckeye  was  an  early  planted  town  and  grew  among  tbe  bushes 
of  that  name  on  the  bank  of  a  summer  dry  wash  that  was  a  roaring- 
creek  in  winter.  The  village  began  in  1856,  when  J.  P.  Charles  was 
made  postmaster  there.  J.  0.  Maxwell  was  the  second  arrival  and 
succeeded  Charles.  Then  came  Benjamin  E^,  followed  by  R.  A. 
Daniels.  In  1875  the  Vaca  Valley  and  Clear  Lake  Railroad  passing- 
two  miles  to  the  west  ended  Buckeye's  greatness  and  its  future 
distinction  moved  to  Winters  and  Madison. 

WHAT    THE    EAILROADS    DID 

The  extension  of  the  road  up  the  valley  built  Madison  and 
weakened  Cottonwood,  a  town  established  in  that  vicinity  by  Charles 
Henrich  in  1852.  The  line  only  hesitated  at  Cottonwood  and  went 
on  to  its  new  terminus,  Madison.  During  the  two  or  three  years 
much  of  Cottonwood  followed — houses  and  all  on  wheels.  The  dis- 
tance was  not  long,  the  way  level  and  the  change  not  difficult. 
L.  W.  Hilliker  was  six  days  getting  his  hotel  to  its  new  site,  but 
he  took  care  of  bis  thirty  regular  boarders  while  the  hotel  was 
trundling  over  the  Yolo  plains.  The  ancient  structure  long  did 
business  in  its  new  location. 

Madison,  a  child  of  the  railroad,  was  built  in  1877  by  the  con- 
struction of  a  number  of  large  warehouses  along  the  track;  also  a 
flouring  mill  at  a  cost  of  $16,000.  Almost  immediately  there  fol- 
lowed business  blocks  and  dwellings.  A  list  of  the  buildings  of 
the  town  at  that  early  period  gives  two  large  stores  and  one  each 
of  everything  else  in  the  way  of  business  features  except  saloons, 
and  of  these  there  were  four. 

The  iron  rails  threading  this  incomparable  valley  passes  Es- 
parto, Capay,  Guinda  and  terminates  at  Rumsey,  a  village  well 
up  in  the  coast  range,  400  feet  above  the  sea,  located  by  Capt. 
D.  C.  Rumsey,  a  charter  member  of  Yolo's  pioneers. 

TOWN    OF    THEODORE    WINTERS 

The  same  railroad  as  soon  as  it  crossed  Putah  creek  and  was 
fairly  in  Yolo  county  saw  started  the  town  of  Winters,  the  day  of 
its  birth  being  May  22,  1875.  The  site  of  forty  acres  was  donated 
to  the  railroad  company,  and  D.  P.  Edwards  added  an  equal  amount 
of  land  to  the  town,  and  this  is  known  as  the  Edwards  Addition. 
Later  the  Westley  Hill  tract  became  an  addition  of  Winters.  The 
town  pioneers  were  John  Abby,  W.  P.  Womack,  Charles  Wolf, 
A.  McDonald,  E.  Ireland,  E.  A.  Humphrey,  D.  P.  Edwards,  Dr. 
Bell,  Henry  Craner,  O.  P.  Fassett,  S.  Harriman,  James  Wilson, 
J.  Jeans,  V.  Morris,  A.  J.  Pipken,  Ed.  Dafoe.     The  first  buildings 


56  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

were  John  Abby's  residence,  also  his  blacksmith  shop;  W.  P.  Wo- 
mack's  store;  Terrell  and  Ray's  tinshop,  and  Dave  Scroggins' 
boarding  house.  The  first  large  merchandise  establishment  was 
owned  by  Mansfield  and  Theodore,  and  two  livery  stables  by  Tucker 
and  Bandy  and  Robert  Brown.  The  first  harness  shop  was  owned 
by  E.  A.  Humphrey,  and  this  business  is  still  carried  on  by  his  sons, 
Walter  and  R.  L.  Humphrey.  Mrs.  Parker  ran  the  Parker  house. 
The  first  church  edifice  was  the  Methodist,  erected  in  1875,  which 
is  yet  standing  on  Russell  street.  B.  W.  Russell  was  the  first 
pastor  and  Elders  Norton  and  Canterbury  the  officers.  The  Cum- 
berland Presbyterian  was  organized  in  1876  with  T.  M.  Johnson 
pastor.  Dr.  H.  C.  Culton  succeeded  him  the  next  year  and  is  the 
pastor  at  the  present  time.  The  Baptist  Church,  organized  at 
Buckeye,  was  reorganized  in  1880  at  Winters  by  Rev.  Mr.  Barnes; 
the  Christian  Church  in  1877  with  S.  B.  Dunton  pastor ;  the  Catho- 
lic Church  was  organized  by  Father  Walrath,  pastor. 

During  the  first  year  of  the  town  the  Masonic,  Odd  Fellows, 
Knights  of  Pythias  and  Good  Templars  lodges  were  organized  in 
Winters  and  later  the  Order  of  Eastern  Star,  Foresters  of  America, 
Woodmen  of  the  World,  Women  of  Woodcraft,  Native  Sons  Parlor, 
Pythian  Sisterhood  and  Redmen  were  established  there.  Being 
centrally  located  for  a  shipping  point  for  the  surrounding  agri- 
cultural country,  Winters  was  soon  a  big  place  and  the  second  city 
of  importance  in  the  county.  It  was  incorporated  in  1897  with  Dr. 
Z.  T.  Magilll'  L.  A.  Banner,  A.  Prescott,  E.  Ireland  and  R.  L.  Day 
the  board  of  city  dads.  Winters  was  early  in  the  march  of  progress, 
and  in  1901  there  were  issued  water  works  bonds  in  the  sum  of 
$17,000,  while  in  1911  bonds  for  a  complete  sewer  system  in  the 
sum  of  $28,000  were  issued.  The  grammar  school  was  moved  from 
Pine  Grove  in  1875  and  its  first  teacher  was  H.  B.  Pendergast. 
This  school  now  occupies  a  large,  modern,  two-story  building  and 
employs  five  teachers.  In  1892  the  Winters  high  school  was  estab- 
lished, with  L.  B.  Scranton  principal.  At  present  there  are  five 
teachers  and  104  students  on  the  register. 

As  an  indication  of  the  financial  and  business  standing  of  the 
town,  there  are  two  banks,  the  First  National,  also  the  Citizens' 
Bank  of  Winters.  The  Bank  of  Winters  was  incorporated  in  1885, 
and  in  1911  was  made  the  First  National  of  Winters,  with  a  capital 
and  surplus  of  $96,500.  The  Citizens'  Bank  was  incorporated  in 
1907,  capital  and  surplus  $89,672.  Both  institutions  have  savings 
banks.  The  principal  business  firms  and  incorporations  at  present 
are  the  Winters  Canning  Co.;  Notion  Store  (Dunnigan) ;  Jacobs  & 
Wilcox,  butcher  shop;  Archer  &  Son,  butcher  shop;  F.  B.  Chandler 
Lumber  Co.;  J.  M.  Sowle,  grocery  store;  Winters  Fruit  Exchange; 
Humphrey  Harness  Store ;  Wyatt  &  Wilson,  real  estate ;  R.  L.  Day, 
drug  store;  The  Baker  Co.,  merchandise  store;  C.  E.  Wyatt,  jew- 


HISTORY  OF   YOLO   COUNTY  57 

elry;  Winters  Dried  Fruit  Co.;  "Winters  Grocery  &  Hardware  Co.; 
Winters  Garage  Co.;  Winters  Orchard  Co.;  Producers'  Fruit  Co.; 
W.  P.  Womack,  real  estate;  J.  H.  Wolfskill,  livery  stable;  D.  0. 
Judy,  livery  stable;  Fenley  Mercantile  Co.;  Grangers'  Warehouse; 
Parker  &  Wertner,  groceries;  J.  A.  Henderson,  Commission;  J. 
Rummelsburg,  Merchandise;  Earl  Fruit  Co.;  William  Betz,  res- 
taurant; E.  B.  Kemper  &  Co.,  drugs;  Campbell  &  Son,  groceries;  A. 
J.  Bertholet,  bakery;  Brattin  &  Hamilton,  Temperance  saloon;  J. 
Vasey,  merchandise ;  Adams  Lumber  Co. ;  B.  Conners,  electrical 
supplies;  Pacific  Fruit  Exchange;  Kirkbride  Bakery,  and.R.  Baker, 
garage. 

The  Winters  Express— formerly  the  Winters  Advocate — has 
been  for  many  years  ably  conducted  by  E.  C.  Rust. 

WINTERS    "DRY"    AND    PROGRESSIVE 

April  1,  1907,  the  large  concrete  county  bridge  which  spans 
Putah  creek  at  Winters  was  dedicated  with  a  celebration  and  ap- 
propriate ceremonies.  This  fine  structure  was  jointly  erected  by 
Yolo  and  Solano  counties  at  a  cost  of  $40,000.  This  and  the  con- 
crete bridge  erected  by  the  Southern  Pacific  Railroad  Company  at 
that  place  cost  about  $110,000. 

The  liquor  saloons  of  Winters,  with  like  institutions  through 
Yolo,  were  voted  out  of  business  and  existence  several  years  ago, 
and  their  loss  is  a  gain.  Winters  in  her  rich  fruit  belt  of  about 
50,000  acres  is  prosperous  and  progressive,  though  the  town  has 
received  its  share  of  disaster.  August  12,  1888,  all  the  business 
portion  of  the  south  side  of  Main  street  was  burned  and  April  19, 
1892,  an  earthquake  damaged  or  destroyed  every  brick  and  stone 
building  in. the  town,  causing  a  heavy  loss.  In  1891  the  Occidental 
Hotel  was  burned  and  in  1898  the  Masonic  Hall  was  consumed  by 
fire.  In  1902  the  Winters  Dried  Fruit  sheds,  F.  B.  Chandler's  lum- 
ber yards  and  the  Grangers'  Warehouse  were  totally  destroyed 
with  a  loss  of  over  $100,000.  Out  of  these  destructive  flames  Win- 
ters has  come  with  better,  finer  and  stronger  buildings  of  brick  and 
stone,  so  even  from  the  ashes  of  disaster  has  issued  good. 

DUNNIGAN    AND    HIS    TOWN 

The  town  of  Dunnigan — or  what  was  afterwards  the  town — 
was  started  into  being  by  two  early  settlers,  J.  S.  Copp  and  John 
Wilson.  During  the  year  1852  they  were  living  down  nearer  the 
Sacramento  river,  but  the  winter  flood  washed  them  on  to  higher 
ground  and  they  settled  on  new  claims  here.  Next  year  A.  W. 
Dunnigan  came  and  gave  name  to  the  place.  With  him  were  Henry 
Yarick  and  Abial  Barker,  the  former  going  into  the  hotel  business 
with  Dunnigan,  the  inn  being  known  as  "Dunnigan's."  Other  neigh- 
bors were  Irving  W.  and  William  Brownell,  Isaac  Rice,  D.  T.  Bird, 
Harry  Porterfield  and  M.  A.  Rahm.     The  first  store  was  opened  in 


58  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

1866  by  G.  B.  Lewis,  who  sold  out  to  William  Earll.  Z.  J.  Brown 
was  the  proprietor  of  a  drug  and  notion  store  for  several  years, 
after  which  he  was  succeeded  by  G-.  W.  Gray.  In  1876  the  railroad 
came  along,  and  the  town  plat  of  Dunnigan  was  filed  for  record 
at  the  county  seat  November  1  of  that  year. 


The  place  on  the  railroad  known  as  Black's  was  the  pioneer 
home  of  J.  J.  Black,  who  located  there"  in  1865.  When  the  road,  ex- 
tending northward  towards  the  Oregon  line,  reached  his  farm  he 
donated  ten  acres  for  depot  and  grounds  and  the  station  was  the 
result.  C.  H.  Smart  was  the  first  resident  thereof,  constructing 
for  his  use  a  dwelling  house  and  a  blacksmith  shop.  He  was  fol- 
lowed by  William  Dorgan  and  Robert  Huston,  who  with  his  brother 
Edward  established  the  first  store  in  1876.  A.  C.  Turner  started 
the  first  hotel,  and  Thomas  and  Hunt  erected  the  first  grain  ware- 
house. Among  other  builders  were  D.  N.  Hershey,  Ed  Huston, 
George  Glascock  and  John  Wolff.  Black's  Station  from  the  first 
was  an  important  shipping  station,  the  great  farms  in  the  vicinity 
sending  in  their  harvests  to  this  point  for  transportation  to  market. 
The  coming  of  the  Yolo  County  Consolidated  Water  Company's 
system  in  1903  to  Black's  added  much  to  the  importance  of  the 
place  and  stimulated  business.  The  new  packing  plant  was  finished 
that  year,  making  the  station  a  fruit  center. 

ALONG    THE    RIVEE    FRONT 

Along  the  Sacramento  river  from  Knight's  Landing  on  the 
north  to  Clarksburg  on  the  south  are  many  shipping  points,  from 
which  are  shipped  the  product  of  Yolo's  never-failing  fields.  Dur- 
ing the  last  fifty  years  millions  of  tons  of  freight  have  passed  down 
that  splendid  stream.  Knight's  Landing  since  the  day  in  1843  when 
William  Knight  built  on  the  Indian  mound  that  marked  the  ancient 
meeting  place  of  Cache  creek  and  the  Sacramento  river  has  been 
favored  of  fortune,  as  early  was  demonstrated  its  importance  as  a 
steamboat  landing  and  point  of  communication  between  the  people 
east  and  west  of  the  big  central  river.  When  the  town  was  laid 
out  in  1849  they  called  it  Baltimore,  but  an  agreement  over  the 
sale  of  the  new  town  lots  could  not  be  amicably  arranged  and 
the  title  Baltimore  was  lost.  Knight  established  a  ferry  there, 
which  afterwards  passed  to  the  ownership  of  J.  W.  Snowball,  in 
those  days  the  ferry  tolls  were  for  a  man  and  horse,  $1 ;  for  a  team 
and  wagon,  $5.  In  1850  S.  R.  Smith  kept  a  hotel  in  the  settlement 
and  in  1853  Charles  F.  Reed  surveyed  and  laid  off  a  townsite  and 
it  was  given  officially  the  name  of  Knight's  Landing.     That  year 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  59 

J.  W.  Snowball  and  J.  J.  Perkins  opened  a  large  general  merchan- 
dise store  on  the  Indian  mound.  On  the  1st  of  January  Capt.  J.  H. 
Updegraff  opened  his  hotel  under  festive  auspices,  with  a  grand 
New  Year's  party,  with  tickets  $10,  a  steamer  being  run  from  Sac- 
ramento for  the  accommodation  of  guests.  The  establishment  was 
called  the  "Yolo  House."  In  1860  D.  N.  Hershey  and  George 
Glascock  erected  a  brick  hotel,  which  took  the  place  of  the  Yolo 
House,  that  inn  being  retired  to  the  status  of  a  private  residence. 
March  25,  1890,  the  Knight's  Landing  branch  of  the  Southern  Pa- 
cific Railroad  was  completed  and  ready  for  business,  and  later 
the  completion  of  the  bridge  across  the  river  added  immensely 
to  the  prosperity  of  the  town.  J.  W.  Snowball  died  February  6, 
1906,  aged  seventy-nine.  He  was  one  of  the  pioneers  of  '52  and 
was  a  son-in-law  of  the  late  William  Knight. 


60  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER  XVI 
JEROME  DAVIS  AND  DAVI8VILLE 

When  Jerome  C.  Davis  came  to  Davisville  there  was  little 
doing.  This  was  early  in  the  '50s,  but  the  state  agricultural  report 
of  1S56  says  that  he  had  eight  thousand  acres  of  land,  one  thou- 
sand of  which  were  enclosed.  It  also  stated  that  he  was  irrigating 
some  of  his  land  by  pumping  water  from  Puto  creek  with  a  steam 
engine;  that  he  had  a  large  peach  orchard,  several  thousand  bear- 
ing grapevines,  one  hundred  and  fifty  horses,  three  thousand  head 
of  cattle  and  about  the  same  number  of  sheep,  and  that  four  hun- 
dred acres  of  wheat  and  barley  had  produced  for  him  ove>'  thirty 
bushels  to  the  acre  that  year.  In  1858  he  had  twenty-one  miles 
of  fencing  and  in  1864  he  had  thirteen  thousand  acres,  and  had 
eighty-eight  hundred  and  eleven  acres  of  land,  upon  which  was  thirty- 
three  miles  of  fencing.  In  1867  William  Dresbach  leased 
the  old  Davis  homestead  and  changed  it  to  a  hotel,  calling  the 
place  the  "Yolo  House."  Other  buildings  were  added  to  the  town 
and  Dresbach  named  it  Davisville.  When  the  rails  reached  the 
place  it  boomed  into  a  small  city.  Ii  was  the  only  railroad  station 
in  the  county  and  was  quickly  a  great  grain  shipping  point.  Build- 
ing lots  sold  for  a  high  prica  and  Davisville— it  was  Davisville  then 
and  long  afterwards — grew  by  leaps  and  bounds.  William  Dres- 
bach was  the  first  merchant,  first  Wells,  Fargo  agent,  and  that  ex- 
press company  did  a  huge  monthly  business.  The  extension  of  the 
Marysville  branch  of  the  Central  Pacific  Railroad  northward  in 
1868  and  the  building  of  the  Yaca  Valley  road  to  Madison  in  1875 
naturally  withdrew  much  of  the  shipping  business  from  Davisville, 
but  the  development  of  the  surrounding  productive  agricultural 
country  largely  made  up  for  such  loss. 

FARMERS    BY    SCIENCE 

The  location  of  the  State  University  Farm,  College  of  Agricul- 
ture, at  this  point  is  a  grand  testimonial  to  the  soil  value  of  Yolo. 
The  entire  seven  hundred  and  eighty  acres  of  this  classic  ranch 
is  of  the  rich  winter  wash  from  the  upper  lands.  For  countless 
ages  Putah  creek  has  been  spreading  its  sediment  over  the  Davis 
plain  and  the  alluvial  crust  of  from  fourteen  to  twenty  feet  resting 
over  a  water  level  is  of  wondrous  fertility.  This  soil  character- 
istic is  found  in  the  Cache  creek  delta  and  other  hill  streams  that 
sink  their  floods  in  the  rich  plains  between  the  range  and  the  river. 
When  the  state  legislature  in  1905  appropriated  the  preliminary 
$150,000  and  started  a  commission  to  select  a  farm  for  the  agri- 
cultural   department    of   the   University   of   California    almost    one 


HISTORY   OF    YOLO    COUNTY  61 

hundred  tracts  of  land  in  different  portions  of  the  state  were  exam- 
ined, and  this  site  was  chosen  as  best  adapted  for  the  various  pur- 
poses for  which  such  a  farm  must  he  used.  The  land  cost  about 
$103,000,  and  the  legislature  of  1907  made  a  further  appropriation 
of  $132,000  for  the  necessary  buildings  and  equipment  of  the  insti- 
tution. The  farm  was  opened  for  instruction  in  October,  1908,  with 
five  separate  short  courses  for  farmers,  and  the  School  of  Agri- 
culture, consisting  of  a  three  years'  course  for  boys  who  have  fin- 
ished the  common  schools,  was  opened  in  January,  1909. 

THE  EICH  ALLUVIUM  FEOM  THE  HILLS 

As  time  goes  on  the  remarkable  and  unlimited  productive  pos- 
sibilities of  California's  soil  become  better  known.  Ages  before  the 
agriculturist  with  the  white  skin  walked  over  these  plains  the  ele- 
ments in  the  earth  and  air  were  storing  chemicals  among  the  grass 
roots  for  the  coming  centuries.  In  no  portion  of  the  state  is  this 
more  apparent  than  in  the  great  central  valley  of  this  territory. 
The  day  cannot  be  set  when  the  Sacramento  river  broke  its  way 
through  the  middle  plains,  rolling  down  to  its  meeting  with  the  sea, 
but  year  after  year  it  has  gathered  fertility  from  the  higher  lands 
to  sow  it  in  moisture  and  sediment  on  the  lower.  There  were  wide 
floodings  in  those  prehistoric  winters  when  the  spreading  tides  fol- 
lowed the  Indians  and  animals  to  the  safety  of  the  hills,  but  the 
deposit-covered  land  surface  grew  richer  from  the  inundation  and 
every  little  tributary  stream  swollen  from  the  mountain  showers 
adds  its  part  to  the  deluge  below,  also  adds  its  contribution  to  the 
accumulations  of  richness  annually  stored  in  the  soil.  Yolo  as  well 
as  its  upper  and  lower  neighbor — Colusa  and  Solano — appears  to 
have  been  favored  by  the  builders  of  the  hemisphere,  and  tins  strip 
of  country  between  the  Coast  range  and  the  Sacramento  river  seems 
to  have  been  receiving  seasonal  benefits  from  such  arrangements 
ever  since  the  cornerstone  of  the  continent  was  laid.  These  great 
Yolo  reservations  of  fertility  are  to  be  found  in  the  "made  lands" 
at  the  sinks  of  Cache  and  Putah  creeks  as  well  as  in  Cottonwood, 
Dry  and  Buckeye  creeks  or  sloughs.  Willow  slough  in  summer 
appears  from  a  large  cold  spring,  and  its  course  toward  the  marshes 
is  marked  by  a  succession  of  ponds  or  springs.  In  winter  Cache 
creek  drives  a  large  volume  of  water  into  Cottonwood  creek  and 
into  the  plain  which  finds  outlet  into  the  tules  through  "Willow 
slough.  So  navigable  has  been  this  winter  system  of  valley  streams 
that  frequently  in  the  past  boatmen  have  easily  floated  from  Sut- 
ter's Fort  in  Sacramento  to  Gordon  ranch  on  Cache  creek  in  Yolo 
county. 

THE    WARM    GEAPE    LOAM 

In  the  region  bordering  the  western  mountains  and  among 
these  "hains  are  the  grain,  grape  and  apple  lands,  the  warm  sandy 


62  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

or  clayey  loam  being  especially  fitted  for  this  thermal-loving  vege- 
tation. And  here  the  irrigating  ditches  have  their  uses,  and  here  is 
seen  the  need  of  the  great  natural  reservoir  hanging  amid  the  Lake 
mountains  above  the  Yolo  plains  which  will  one  day  be  tapped  for 
the  thirsty  farms  and  gardens  below.  Though  the  late  years  have 
seen  the  immense  wheat  fields  of  this  section  shrink  in  acreage  as 
the  fruit  market  of  the  world  increased  in  volume,  the  great  trac- 
tion plows  yet  furrow  the  warm  loam,  and  the  same  steamers  reap 
and  thresh  the  full  harvests.  More  to  the  east  and  bordering  the 
tule  belt  are  the  ideal  fruit  lands  of  the  Sacramento  valley,  and 
no  soil  in  the  crust  of  the  planet  is  more  productive  for  the  uses 
of  mankind.  It  is  twenty  or  thirty  feet  of  sedimentary  deposit, 
entirely  without  hardpan,  the  long-ago  dead  vegetation  and  the  hill- 
erosion  of  ages  washed  from  the  western  ranges  and  pressed  into 
a  stratum  as  fertile  as  the  mudbeds  of  the  Nile. 

THE    BUSIEST    PLANT    OST    EAKTH 

Here  amid  the  tree  and  vine  tracts  grows  the  alfalfa,  king  of 
the  forage  plants,  the  busiest  vegetable  in  the  green  kingdom.  It  is 
always  growing.  Mow  it  and  before  the  hay  is  cured  for  baling 
another  crop  is  under  way  to  maturity.  It  is  the  evergreen,  the 
semperviren  of  the  lower  plant-life.  Its  rootlets  will  find  moisture 
in  the  driest  soil,  but  in  the  rich  alluvium  of  the  Woodland  plains 
and  especially  where  the  irrigating  waters  flow  the  three  or  four 
crops  a  year  are  enormous.  Twelve  or  fourteen  thousand  acres 
is  probably  the  area  devoted  to  this  exceedingly  prolific  clover — 
the  luscious  lucerne  of  the  Swiss  meadows  transplanted  in  the  rich 
soil  of  the  far  west.  Five-sixths  of  the  hay  crop  (value  about 
$600,000)  of  this  county  is  alfalfa. 

The  chief  cereal  of  the  Yolo  plains  is  barley  and  its  annual 
crop  now  reaches  a  value  of  $1,500,000.  Being  of  the  export 
variety,  it  finds  a  ready  European  market.  In  the  latest  reports 
of  the  State  Agricultural  Societv  the  acreage  of  barley  is  about 
100,000;  wheat,  16,000;  alfalfa,  15,000. 

THE    SUGAR    BEETS    AND    GRAPES 

Another  plant  that  is  showing  up  Yolo  as  a  garden  Spot  is  the 
sugar  beet.  This  industry  is  a  new  one  in  the  county,  but  the  val- 
uable vegetable  has  found  in  this  warm,  rich  loam  just  the  fertility 
it  requires,  and  the  eight  or  ten  thousand  acres  yearly  produce 
for  the  mills  probably  60,000  tons  of  beets.  Along  the  river  bot- 
toms grow  the  hop  crops  which  add  yearly  to  the  income  of  the 
county.  One  of  the  great  divisions  of  horticulture  in  Yolo  is  the 
culture  of  raisin  grapes  and  the  varieties  most  grown  are  the  Alex- 
andria muscat,   the   seedless   Sultana   and   the   Thompson    seedless. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  63 

The  Sultana  is  the  choice,  bearing  in  some  years  as  high  as  fifteen 
tons  to  the  acre.  It  is  a  small  berry,  seedless,  and  of  a  yellowish 
tint  when  ripe,  and  five  pounds  of  fresh  grapes  will  make  one 
pound  of  raisins.  The  present  yearly  output  is  about  4,000,000 
pounds.  About  165,000  gallons  of  sweet  wine  are  annually  made 
in  this  county.  Probably  $550,000  worth  of  butter  each  year  is 
the  showing  of  the  dairies.  Yolo  has  ninety  miles  of  Sacramento 
river-front  and  something  like  4,500,000  pounds  of  marketable  fish, 
representing  a  value  of  about  $250,000,  are  caught  in  the  waters 
that  belong  to  this  county.  A  total  present  annual  fruit  output 
of  Yolo  county  may  be  estimated  as:  Green  fruit  and  vegetables 
(6),  40,000,000  pounds,  value  $650,000;  dried  fruit,  25^000.000 
pounds,  value,  $1,400,000;  canned  apples,  16,000  cases;  cherries, 
700  cases;  peaches,  33,000  cases;  plums,  900  eases.  Total  value, 
$124,000. 


64  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

CHAPTER  XVII 
YOLO  COUNTY'S  SPLENDID  PROMISE 

Yolo  county  has  an  area  of  1,017  square  miles,  or  650,880  acres, 
and  the  number  of  acres  now  assessed  is  probably  630,000,  leaving 
little  government  or  valueless  land  on  the  map.  Assessed  value  of 
country  real  estate,  $14,000,000 ;  total  assessed  value  of  all  property, 
estimated,  $22,000,000.  Yolo  county  is  practically  without  public 
buildings — about  $50,000  will  cover  all,  which  probably  represents 
the  newer  Hall  of  Records.  The  court  house  is  old,  superannuated, 
and  a  large  portion  of  the  structure  is  unfit  for  use,  but  notwith- 
standing this  unique  fact  in  the  history  of  California  counties  two 
bond  propositions  for  the  construction  of  a  new  building  have  been 
voted  down  by  the  people.  However,  the  people  voted  with  no  un- 
certain intent  when  they  voted  the  county  "dry."  One  sturdy 
citizen  remarked:  "If  we  have  no  court  house  and  county  jail,  we 
have  no  whiskey  saloons  to  fill  one  with  litigants  and  the  other 
with  lawbreakers."  Another  of  the  same  moral  caliber  and  along 
the  same  line  said:  "Yolo  county,  working  deeply  in  the  problems  of 
soil  reclamation,  of  irrigation,  may  fittingly  adopt  the  'water- 
wagon'  faith  as  her  official  belief."  And,  in  all,  Yolo  is  on  the 
right  track.  To  bring  her  six  hundred  thousand  arable  acres  up 
to  a  high  standard  of  culture  she  will  tap  the  natural  reservoirs 
in  the  western  hills  and  water  the  plains;  will  drain  off  the  tule 
belt  paralleling  the  Sacramento  on  the  east;  and  in  some  day  the 
fruit  and  garden  tracts  will  lie  unbrokenly  between  the  foothills  and 
the  river.  Steam  roads  are  crossing  Yolo  longitudinally  and  the 
newer  electric  lines  are  cutting  the  county  east  and  west.  Big 
land  tracts  cannot  maintain  themselves  indivisible  when  the  flood- 
ditches  and  the  road-grades  cut  their  areas.  Fourteen  thousand 
five  hundred  may  fairly  estimate  the  present  population  of  Yolo 
(Solano  28,550,  Colusa  7,732),  but  in  the  coming  era  of  smaller 
farms  and  better  methods  of  farming  the  fourteen  thousand  must 
double  to  Solano's  figure.  This  training  of  the  Yolo  agriculturist 
is  the  work  of  the  Farm  College  at  Davis. 

SOME   YOLO   RANCHES 

That  this  country  has  several  sizable  farms  for  future  division 
the  following  figures,  taken  from  the  latest  tax  rolls  showing  acre- 
age and  assessment  of  country  lands,  may  be  offered  as  evidence: 

P.  N.  Ashley,  855  acres,  $30,000.  It  is  safe  to  double  the  as- 
sessment when  seeking  the  market  value.  Baird  Bros.,  1,118  acres. 
Woodland  valley,  $68,000.  Olive  J.  Bandy,  5,894  acres,  $54,620. 
Bullard  Co.,  1,661  acres,  Woodland  valley,  $96,050.     Capay  Valley 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  65 

Land  Co.,  2,680  acres,  $98,380.  Ellen  W.  Coil,  2,030  acres,  Wood- 
land valley,  $81,550.  C.  J.  Day  Estate,  1,893  acres,  $20,824.  H.  P. 
Eakle,  1,025  acres,  Wood  Prairie,  $46,040.  Forbes  Estate,  8,079 
acres,  Fairview,  $16,700.  H.  H.  Gable  et  al.,  7,800  acres,  $69,700. 
Eliza  Gallup  et  al.,  at  Willow  Slough,  Grafton,  Fairview,  4,662 
acres,  $44,940.  D.  N.  Hershey  Estate,  15,477  acres,  $290,607.  G.  W. 
Hollingsworth,  16,470  acres,  $21,655.  Mrs.  J.  E.  Merritt,  3,605 
acres,  $152,150.  T.  A.  Sparks,  2,341  acres,  $21,045.  A.  W.  Morris, 
1,814  acres,  $91,155.  Sacramento  River  Farms  Co.,  10,283  acres, 
$140,000.  Alice  Tubbs,  5,715  acres,  North  Grafton,  $43,755.  Yolo 
Ranch  Co,  2,055  acres,  Grafton,  $23,055.  Agnes  Bemerly  et  al., 
13,166  acres,  Grafton,  $205,240.  Thomas  Laugenour,  8,448  acres, 
$118,224.  Elizabeth  Richie,  2,349  acres,  $32,490.  Nettle  E.  Vickery, 
4,492  acres.  W.  G.  Duncan,  7,277  acres.  G.  W.  Scott,  12,850  acres, 
Cottonwood,  Gordon,  Fairview,  $111,742.  Matilda  Scott,  795  acres, 
Cottonwood,  $12,385.  Stephens  Agricultural  &  Livestock  Co.,  7,828 
acres,  Guinda  Canyon,  Capay  Valley,  $208,848.  G.  W.  Chapman, 
23,144  acres,  $109,948.  T.  H."  Williams,  6,300  acres,  Merritt.  Glide 
estate,  41,347  acres,  $190,167.  Cowell  estate.  16,950  acres,  $152,850. 
Yolo  Orchard  Co.,  399  acres,  Cacheville,  $48,000. 

A   GBEAT   EARTHEN    WATER    BASIN 

The  valley  of  the  Sacramento  is  an  elongated  vessel,  a  huge 
earthen  basin,  lying  between  eastern  and  western  mountain  sys- 
tems, and  its  greater  diameter  being  north  and  south.  Into  this 
for  ages  countless  and  unrecorded  the  never-failing  winter  rains 
have  fallen,  and  through  its  length,  like  a  great  vent-pipe,  flows  the 
river,  carrying  the  flood  waters  away  to  the  sea.  That  this  grand 
central  llano,  lying  within  its  rims  of  Coast  range  and  Sierra 
Nevada,  is  under  the  warm  southeastern  rain-current  where  it  meets 
the  colder  northwest  winds  is  a  meteorological  fact.  Whether  in 
southern  or  northern  rains,  the  storms  that  drench  the  Pacific  slope 
from  British  Columbia  to  the  latitude  of  Sau  Francisco  come  from 
the  contact  of  polar  and  equatorial  moisture-laden  airs  above 
and  the  peculiar  formation  of  the  mountain  systems  below.  The 
waters  falling  on  the  eastern  slope  of  the  Coast  range  and  the 
western  slope  of  the  Sierras  flow  into  the  Sacramento  and  its  tribu- 
taries. Their  volume  is  too  great  for  the  draining  capacity  of 
these  streams,  hence  the  winter  flooding  of  their  adjacent  territory. 
The  first  white  settlers  along  these  great  runways  saw  them  wasting 
across  their  banks  and  levees  were  built  thereon  and  the  war  with 
the  river  began.  For  years  the  river  won.  Notwithstanding  the 
embankments  raised,  the  floods  broke  through  them  and  an  inland 
sea  covered  the  riparian  lands.  The  immediate  shores  of  the  rivers 
are  naturally  higher  than  the  back  country,  such  being  caused  by 
the  deposit  of  ages,  and  when  the  storm  water  got  on   to   these 


66  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

lowlands  it  had  a  free  right  of  way  far  and  near.  In  the  earlier 
winters  antedating  the  white  people  the  animal  instinct  of  the 
Indians  led  them  to  camp  above  flood-mark  before  "heap  water 
cover  country  all  up;"  consequently  no  harm  was  done — rather 
the  inundation  leaving  its  sedimentary  deposit  on  the  submerged 
surface  was  a  benefit.  But  to  the  later  settler  who  saw  the  deluge 
roaring  around  and  over  his  house,  destroying  his  livestock  and 
frequently  destroying  human  lives,  the  winters  in  the  Sacramento 
valley  were  horrors.  The  river  became  a  monster  whose  force  and 
fatality  human  ingenuity  could  not  cheek.  If  the  small  levee  sys- 
tem of  that  period  kept  a  winter  floor  in  its  river  it  was  because 
that  winter  was  a  "dry"  one,  but  the  "wet"  seasons  swept  their 
surplus  waters  unobstructed  over  the  country. 

HOW   THE   FLOOD  CAME  DOWN   IN    "  FIFTY " 

The  winter  of  1850  did  not  find  in  Yolo  county  much  to  destroy, 
but  on  the  eastern  shore  of  the  river  it  worked  havoc.  Sacramento 
City  was  large  enough  and  helpless  enough  for  a  flood.  As  is  usual, 
the  citizens  paid  little  attention  to  warnings,  but  rested  in  a  false 
security  until  the  disaster  was  at  their  doors.  The  rains  during 
December  and  January  were  so  heavy  that  there  was  a  slight  ap- 
prehension of  coming  trouble.  The  Sacramento  and  American 
were  rising  rapidly  and  the  back  country  was  becoming  flooded, 
cutting  off  communication  with  the  highlands.  Dr.  John  F.  Morse, 
the  well-known  California  pioneer,  was  practicing  his  profession, 
and  his  accounts  of  the  great  '50  flood  that  swept  the  Sacramento 
valley  and  the  capital  city  are  interesting  as  well  as  authentic. 
The  wave  of  the  deluge  seemed  to  rise  suddenly,  apparently  without 
warning,  so  sure  were  the  people  that  the  town  plat  was  above 
flood  level.  "This  false  assurance,"  says  Dr.  Morse,  "could 
scarcely  be  extinguished  when  the  city  was  absolutely  under  water, 
consequently  when  the  waters  began  to  rush  in  and  overwhelm 
the  place  there  was  no  adequate  means  of  escape  for  life  and 
property.  Many  people  were  drowned,  some  in  their  beds,  some 
in  their  feeble  efforts  to  escape,  and  many  died  from  the  terrible 
exposture  to  which  they  were  subjected.  The  few  boats  belonging 
to  the  shipping  moored  at  the  levees  were  brought  into  immediate 
requisition  in  gathering  up  the  women,  children  and  invalids  that 
were  scattered  over  the  city,  having  sought  safety  on  higher  ground. 
Some  of  these  were  found  in  tents  and  canvas  shacks,  and  others 
in  remote  low  places  were  frequently  found  standing  on  their  beds 
and  other  articles  of  household  furniture  with  the  water  several 
feet  deep  on  the  floor  and  the  flood  still  rising.  The  city  hospital 
was  a  frame  and  canvas  structure  situated  on  very  low  ground, 
and  was  abandoned  by  the  attendants  when  the  water  began  to 
sweep  around  and  through  it.     The  dreadful  cries  of  the  endan- 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  67 

gered  patients  were  finally  heard  and  rescuing  boats  removed  them 
to  safety." 

A  FURIOUS  TIDAL  WAVE 

The  deluge  did  not  come  in  a  gradual  rising  and  swelling  of 
the  river  waters  over  the  land,  but  in  a  rush  as  of  a  tidal  wave. 
The  back  sloughs,  filled  to  the  brim,  seemed  to  empty  themselves, 
and  the  great  floods,  literally  falling  into  the  city,  violently  tore  up 
the  sidewalks,  demolished  small  buildings,  wrenching  loose  articles 
and  even  heavy  merchandise  away  to  be  carried  out  into  the  roaring 
main  stream  and  south  toward  the  sea.  The  principal  streets  were 
deep,  swiftly  flowing  rivers,  down  which  their  waters  plunged 
loaded  with  drift  consisting  of  houses  and  contents,  store  goods, 
fencing  and,  in  fact,  everything  that  would  float  on  the  surface  of 
the  wild  flood.  Lucky  was  the  householder  whose  home  was  a 
two-story  structure  and  the  building  itself  heavy  enough  to  stand 
the  fierce  wash  of  the  deluge.  Apparently  the  whole  city  for  a  time 
lived  on  their  second  floors  and  let  the  river  occupy  the  lower 
portion  of  the  building. 

WINTER    OF    1852-53 

The  winter  of  1852-53  broke  the  flood  record  of  1849-50,  and  not 
only  Sacramento  City  but  much  of  the  Sacramento  valley  was  inun- 
dated. During  November  the  rains  came  down  and  on  Decem- 
ber 10  the  river  was  over  its  banks  and  filling  the  tule  lands.  The 
riparian  towns  had  thrown  up  levees  to  protect  themselves — all 
gauged  to  the  '50  flood.  By  January  1  at  Sacramento  the  rise  was 
twenty-two  feet  above  low-water  level — about  seventeen  inches 
higher  than  '50  and  a  greater  deluge  was  in  the  streets.  From 
the  Colusa  hills  to  the  Montezuma  hills  in  Solano  the  west  shore 
of  the  Sacramento  river  was  under  water — excepting  the  Indian 
mounds.  These  peculiar  elevations,  lifting  from  the  surrounding 
plain,  were  never  submerged,  and  were  the  refuge  resorts  of  stock 
and  frequently  people  in  the  vicinity  during  the  floods.  At  Knight's 
Landing  the  mound  was  the  winter  town  of  the  place.  A  steamer — 
when  one  could  buck  the  stiff  river  current  from  Sacramento — 
would  land  at  the  base  of  the  mound,  and  by  wading  or  flatboating 
a  short  distance  inland  communication  could  be  had  with  the  in- 
terior of  Yolo  county.  Transportation  and  traffic  in  Sacramento 
City  was  by  water  and  on  New  Year's  Day  of  that  year  the  fes- 
tivities of  the  occasion  brought  into  those  Venetian-like  streets 
every  boat,  raft  or  anything  that  would  float  and  carry  a  passenger. 
All  through  much  of  January  the  water  washed  over  the  lands 
adjacent  to  the  rivers,  but  by  the  last  of  that  month  business  could 
be  renewed  and  by  March  the  lands  were  clear. 

The  next  great  flood  was  1861-2.     The  rains  began  in  Novem- 


68  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

ber,  and,  according  to  the  Knight's  Landing  News  of  December  7, 
the  river  at  that  time  was  nearly  bank-full.  "Last  week,"  that 
journal  continues,  "while  we  had  cloudy  but  pleasant  weather,  it 
must  have  been  raining  incessantly  in  the  mountains.  The  river 
is  the  only  indication,  however,  we  have  tlras  far  of  much  wet,  as 
our  farmers  are  complaining  of  a  want  of  rain  necessary  for  their 
plowing."  The  days  are  recorded  as  having  been  unusually  warm 
for  two  weeks  previous  to  this  date,  and  it  is  noted  that  the  green 
grass  was  two  inches  high. 

SACRAMENTO  UNDER  THE  DELUGE 

December  10  Sacramento  was  flooded,  and  the  R  street  levee, 
which  was  one  of  the  few  objects  not  submerged,  was  cut  to  empty 
the  city.  So  great  was  the  rush  of  water  through  the  breach  that 
many  buildings  in  the  vicinity  were  torn  from  their  foundations 
and  washed  away.  By  the  14th  a  great  inland  sea  spread  over 
the  plains  on  both  sides  of  the  river.  Large  droves  of  stock  were 
caught  in  the  lowlands  and  lost.  In  numberless  instances  the  ani- 
mals would  take  refuge  on  a  slight  elevation,  where  they  would 
stand  crowded  and  starve  to  death.  Horses  that  had  stood  for 
weeks  in  the  water  were  disabled  and  had  to  be  killed.  On  the 
4th  of  January  the  unkindly  elements,  not  satisfied  with  spreading 
death  and  destruction  wide  over  the  country,  sent  a  cold  spell  and  a 
snowstorm  whitened  the  land,  adding  to  the  wretchedness  of  the 
general  condition.  January  14  the  river  at  Sacramento  was  twenty- 
four  feet  above  low-water  mark,  eighteen  inches  higher  than  ever 
before  known.  The  Knight's  Landing  News  says  of  this  flood: 
"Our  town  is  dry,  being  protected  by  a  temporary  levee  thrown  up 
by  our  citizens,  but  desolation  utterly  reigns  around  us.  The  loss 
to  ranchers  on  the  river  is  immense.  On  the  finely  fenced  lands 
between  here  and  Fremont  all  the  'fencing  is  swept  away,  Messrs. 
McCormick,  Kneeland,  Dawson,  Wilcoxson  and  Sheriff  Gray  being 
the  greatest  sufferers.  They  had  thousands  of  acres  within  fine 
board  fencing  set  up  with  redwood  posts.  Now  all  is  deluged — 
stock  mired  and  starving  in  the  ruined  plains  and  the  lands  made 
a  waste.  Our  town  is  filled  to  overflowing  with  outside  families 
driven  from  their  homes  above  and  below  here  on  the  river,  until 
not  a  spare  room  can  be  had  in  the  place,  and  the  end  is  not 
yet.  Still  it  rains,  pours  rain,  unceasingly,  no  matter  how  the  winds 
blow — north,  south,  east  or  west.  Heretofore  all  our  rain  came 
from  the  ocean  by  a  south  wind,  but  this  year  two  of  our  heaviest 
and  longest  storms  came  chillingly  from  the  north,  proving  true 
the  old  adage,  'All  signs  fail  in  a  wet  time.'  Toward  Cacheville 
and  in  the  Cache  creek  district  the  floods  have  been  also  severe. 
W.  G.  Hunt  had  a  thousand  head  of  fine  sheep  swept  away  and 
drowned  and  the  losses  in  that  valley  are  so  numerous  they  cannot 
be  specified." 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  69 

The  Sacramento  Union  of  that  period  says:  "We  have  been 
informed  by  George  H.  Swingle,  who  is  here  from  the  sink  of  Putah 
creek,  that  the  flood  has  been  very  severe  between  that  point  and 
Sacramento,  covering  a  distance  of  nine  miles.  A  great  number  of 
buildings  have  been  washed  away,  among  which  are  the  well-known 
Tule  House  and  Miner  House,  and  over  their  sites  are  flowing 
about  ten  feet  of  water.  There  is  nothing  to  indicate  the  location 
of  the  ranches  around  the  sink  of  the  Putah  but  one  solitary  wind- 
mill. Mr.  Swingle  says  that  for  three  days  he  saw  houses,  many 
of  tbem  fine  one  and  one-half  story  edifices,  passing  down  on  the 
flood  from  the  north.  No  estimate  can  be  placed  on  the  livestock 
lost.  To  show  the  depth  of  water  on  these  plains  it  is  only  neces- 
sary to  state  that  a  sloop  sailed  from  Washington  to  Yolo  City 
last  Wednesday.  Mike  Bryte  lost  on  Saturday  last  by  the  freshet 
150  head  of  cattle,  of  which  85  were  milch  cows.  He  lost  about 
100  head  a  month  ago. 

"The  steamers  and  other  vessels  on  the  river  are  constantly 
answering  calls  for  help  from  endangered  people  on  the  shores 
and  large  numbers  have  been  rescued.  Frequently  the  small  boats 
would  go  some  distance  over  the  submerged  lands  before  the  res- 
cuers would  find  and  save  the  castaways  from  their  tottering 
buildings  or  where  they  had  taken  a  temporary  refuge." 

THE    HIGH    WATER    CAME    EAELY 

During  1867  and  1868  the  valley  got  a  re-drenching.  As  early 
as  May,  1867,  the  piled-up  snow  in  the  mountains  melted  under  the 
warm  showers  and  the  plain-streams  were  soon  running'  bank-full. 
Considerable  levee  work  had  been  done,  especially  in  District  No. 
18,  and  most  of  this  went  out  with  the  flood.  The  American  river 
plunged  across  the  Sacramento,  broke  the  levee  on  the  west  bank 
north  of  Washington  and  filled  up  the  Yolo  tule  basin.  As  usual, 
large  droves  of  stock  were  caught  in  the  lowlands  and  perished, 
frequently  while  swimming  becoming  entangled  in  barbed  wire 
fencing.  The  summer  finally  ended  this  flood,  but  in  December 
another  was  due  and  came,  bringing  the  same  brand  of  destruc- 
tion. The  rains  were  accompanied  by  heavy  windstorms  which 
backed  the  high  waters  into  places  which  under  other  conditions 
might  have  escaped  the  deluge.  These  gales  also  prevented  rescues 
and  made  boating  on  the  flood  as  difficult  as  navigation  on  the  surf 
of  an  ocean  beach.  The  Tule  House,  which  had  been  rebuilt  and 
securely  fastened  to  its  foundations  behind  strong  levees,  stood 
firmly,  but  through  the  broken  levees  the  water  stood  eight  feet  on 
the  lower  floor  of  the  building.  By  the  middle  of  January,  1868, 
a  passenger  could  quite  comfortably  make  daily  boat  trips  from 
Sacramento  to  within  three  miles  of  Woodland. 


70  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

BOATING  OVER  THE  YOLO  PLAINS 

The  great  storm  of  January  15,  1878,  came  down  like  a  wolf 
in  the  fold.  Until  that  date  the  rains  had  been  holding  off  and 
the  farmers  were  sadly  anticipating  the  disaster  of  another  dry 
year.  But  a  continuous  three-day  storm  changed  the  aspect  of 
current  things.  All  the  streams  went  over  their  banks,  washing 
bridges  away  and  destroying  everything  on  their  shores.  The  west 
side  of  Sacramento  seemed  to  get  most  of  this  storm,  and  Yolo 
county  got  a  wetting  down  that  washed  away  all  fear  of  a  dry  year. 
The  fiood~waters  in  Colusa  county  came  down  into  Reclamation 
District  108,  filling  that  basin  and  threatening  Knight's  Landing. 
The  river  levees  were  cut  to  turn  the  surplus  water  back  into  the 
stream,  but  a  portion  of  the  town  was  flooded.  The  levee  breaks 
on  the  Yolo  side  of  the  river  relieved  that  overburdened  stream 
of  its  winter  water  and  saved  the  capital  city,  but  it  was  hard  on 
the  "Tuleites." 

WORK    OF    RECLAMATION    AND    IRRIGATION 

The  foregoing  pages  devoted  to  the  winter  floods  of  the  great 
valley  really  tell  little  of  the  havoc  spread  by  the  deluge  over  the 
land  on  both  shores  of  the  Sacramento,  from  Colusa  to  Suisun  bay, 
before  the  levees  and  canals  began  to  protect  the  flood-menaced 
plains.  From  season  to  season  it  was  a  recurring  tragedy.  Con- 
gress in  1850  conveyed  to  the  state  of  California  all  the  swamp  or 
overflowed  land,  unfit  for  cultivation,  that  was  within  her  limits, 
but  nothing  was  done  with  these  great  tracts  until  1861.  Then 
a  Board  of  Reclamation  Commissioners  was  created  by  a  legislative 
act,  consisting  of  A.  M.  Winn  of  Sutter,  president ;  J.  C.  Pemberton 
of  Tulare;  W.  J.  Hooten  of  Solano;  B.  B.  Redding  of  Sacramento, 
and  T.  T.  Boulden  of  San  Joaquin.  The  board,  with  a  large  force 
of  civil  engineers,  worked  steadily  for  two  years  and  laid  out  about 
thirty  reclamation  districts.  Among  them  was  No.  18,  extending 
from  Knight's  Landing  to  Cache  slough,  containing  about  160,000 
acres  of  land.  In  1863  levee  building  along  the  Yolo  bank  of  the 
river  began  in  earnest,  and  the  work  went  on  till  1867,  the  farmers 
over  whose  land  the  embankment  passed  performing  the  labor  by 
contract.  But  the  flood  of  1867-68  struck  the  new,  soft  structure 
and  most  of  it  went  out  in  a  deposit  over  the  submerged  lands. 
In  1864  a  drain  canal  through  the  center  of  tule  marshes  had  been 
dug,  James  Moore  excavating  twelve  miles  of  the  ditch,  and  for 
which  he  received  $18,000.  This  system  of  canal  and  levee  was 
abandoned  and  the  board  abolished  in  1866.  It  cost  Yolo  county 
$213,797  and  was  found  to  be  impracticable. 

In  1869  Charles  F.  Reed  of  Knight's  Landing  organized  the 
Sacramento  Valley  Reclamation  Company  for  the  purpose  of  apply- 
ing a  system  of  reclamation  to  the  tule  countrv  west  of  the  Sacra- 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  71 

mento,  north  of  Knight's  Landing  and  extending  up  into  Colusa 
count}',  embracing  an  area  of  almost  75,000  acres.  Among  its 
promoters  were  such  well-known  capitalists  as  W.  C.  Ralston,  L.  A. 
Garnett,  A.  H.  Rose  and  William  Blanding.  Then  was  organized 
Reclamation  District  108,  with  Messrs.  Reed,  Rose  and  Garnett, 
trustees,  about  41,000  acres  in  Yolo  and  34,000  acres  in  Colusa. 
Levees  were  built  from  Knight's  Landing  to  Colusa  City,  the  first 
year  the  construction  being  completed  to  Upper  Sycamore  slough, 
a  distance  of  thirty-eight  and  one-half  miles,  costing  $450,000.  At 
this  terminus  a  channel  was  cut  from  the  river  to  the  tule  basin 
by  which  the  water  when  high  could  flow  thereinto,  and  at  the 
south  end  of  the  district,  near  Knight's  Landing,  another  channel 
let  this  water  back  into  the  river  when  that  stream  was  low  or 
over  the  tide  lands  during  high  water.  The  levee  system  of  course 
controlled  this  inlet  and  outlet  and  the  necessary  bulkheads  cost 
$12,000  and  $15,000,  respectively.  In  1879  the  late  Dr.  Hugh  J. 
Glenn  completed  the  levee  across  his  great  ranch,  making  eighty 
continuous  miles  of  embankment  from  Knight's  Landing  to  a  point 
seven  miles  above  Princeton,  completing  the  reclamation  of  Dis- 
trict No.  108. 

LEVEEING  THE  RIVER  BANKS 

The  board  of  supervisors  in  1870  formed  Swamp  Land  District 
No.  150,  enclosing  Merritt's  Island  and  tule  lands  in  that  vicinity. 
In  1877  District  307  was  organized.  This  territory  lies  between 
Merritt  Island  and  Babel  slough  and  contains  about  6,000  acres  of 
swamp  land.  For  years  the  work  of  solving  the  flood  problem 
of  the  Yolo  basin  has  gone  on,  scientifically  and  successfully. 
Levees  to  hold  the  river  waters  within  their  lawful  channels  and 
canals  to  drain  the  seepage  from  the  lowlands  of  the  basin  have 
been  the  dream  of  the  land  owners  of  the  great  valley  since  the 
first  winter  flood  swept  over  their  homes.  As  the  big  river,  dredged 
and  cleared,  washes  its  own  free  channel  to  the  sea,  the  levees  on 
its  banks  will  control  that  surplus,  but  the  back  tule-marsh  lands, 
slightly  lower  than  the  river-bank  lands,  will  always  be  the  catch-all 
from  the  Coast  range  on  the  west.  Hence  they  dream  of  the  time 
when  drainage  ditches  will  relieve  the  basin  of  its  winter  waters. 

DREAM    OF    THE    YOLO    RANCHER 

Another  dream  of  the  Yolo  agriculturist  is  the  compounding, 
the  conserving  of  this  drainage  from  Coast  range  on  their  west. 
Up  in  these  mountains  is  Clear  Lake,  its  mean  level  1,325  feet  above 
the  surface  of  the  sea,  twenty  miles  long,  seven  miles  wide,  from 
thirty-five  to  fifty  feet  deep,  and  it  drains  an  area  of  about  417 
square  miles.  The  only  known  outlet  to  this  splendid  natural  res- 
ervoir is  Cache  creek,  and  year  after  year  a  continuous  flow  of 


1-1  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

fresh  water  comes  down  that  natural  canal  to  be  used  for  irrigation 
or  to  be  wasted  in  the  Cache  sinks  at  the  edge  of  the  tule  belt. 
For  years  this  useful  stream  has  supplied  limited  water  for  irri- 
gation, but  a  plan  is  being  perfected,  inaugurated,  by  which  Clear 
Lake  will  be  made  to  distribute  its  water  where  it  will  do  the  most 
good.  A  dam  at  the  lake  outlet  to  control  the  water  without  need- 
less waste  or  without  lowering  the  lake  level  to  the  inconvenience 
or  injury  of  people  living  on  its  shore  will  be  constriieted,  and  a 
system  of  canals  tapping  the  creek  as  it  approaches  the  plain  com- 
pletes the  work.  At  this  writing  the  dams  and  other  work  on  the 
creek  are  being  finished  and  the  work  on  the  lake  will  be  inaugu- 
rated as  soon  as  the  rights  of  way  have  been  obtained.  The  Yolo 
Water  and  Power  Company,  as  the  corporation  is  called,  com- 
prises a  syndicate  of  New  York  and  London  capitalists.  It  pro- 
poses to  be  able  from  its  stored  water  to  effectively  irrigate  at  all 
seasons  of  the  year  200,000  acres  of  land.  And  as  for  power — 
Cache  creek  soon  after  leaving  Clear  lake  strikes  a  lively  gait,  and 
for  twenty-five  miles  it  falls  down  its  canyon  thirty  feet  to  the 
mile.  When  it  leaves  the  canyon  it  enters  Capay  valley,  where 
its  irrigating  labors  will  begin.  Some  idea  of  the  value  and  im- 
portance of  this  enterprise  may  be  formed  when  it  is  remembered 
that  government  engineers  have  reported  that  the  topographical, 
physical  and  hydrographical  conditions  are  such  that  a  more  eco- 
nomic, comprehensive  and  profitable  system  of  irrigation  can  be 
developed  for  Yolo  county  than  for  any  other  locality  on  the  Pacific 
coast. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  73 

CHAPTER  XVIII 
COMMERCIAL  HISTORY   OF  YOLO   COUNTY 
By  C.  W.  Bush 

The  commercial  history  of  Yolo  county  practically  began  in 
the  year  1869.  There  were  two  events  in  the  preceding  autumn 
which  gave  impetus  to  commercial  activities :  the  incorporation  of 
the  Bank  of  Woodland  (the  first  bank  organized  in  the  county) 
and  the  beginning  of  the  first  railroad.  The  track  was  laid  from 
Vallejo  to  Sacramento  at  this  time,  and  during  the  early  months 
of  1869  a  branch  was  built  from  Davis  to  Woodland.  The  writer 
well  remembers  his  trip  up  from  Vallejo  in  the  spring  of  1869, 
which  consumed  a  good  part  of  the  day  over  unballasted  rails,  his 
overnight  at  Davis  and  ride  in  a  mud  wagon  to  Woodland  the  fol- 
lowing morning. 

Yolo  county  was  really  isolated  from  communication  with  the 
outside  world.  But  with  the  completion  of  these  roads  conditions 
rapidly  changed.  Soon  afterward  a  connecting  road  was  projected, 
through  the  instrumentality  largely  of  N.  D.  Rideout,  a  pioneer 
capitalist  of  the  Sacramento  valley,  connecting  Woodland  with  the 
city  of  Marysville.  The  construction  of  this  road  required  the  ex- 
penditure of  a  large  sum  of  money,  as  it  was  necessary  to  cross 
many  miles  of  the  overflow  lands,  and  trestles  had  to  be  built 
covering  this  portion  of  the  construction.  The  scheme  was  financed 
with  great  difficulty.  The  construction  was  necessarily  cheapened, 
and  during  many  of  the  winter  months  the  road  was  not  in  use, 
owing  to  the  insecurity  of  the  trestles.  Subsequently  it  was  taken 
over  by  the  Southern  Pacific  Company  at  considerable  profit  to  the 
original  builders. 

A  few  years  later  another  road  was  constructed,  tapping  the 
main  line  at  the  town  of  Elmira  in  Solano  county  and  extending 
up  through  the  Vaca  and  Pleasant  valleys  in  said  county  to  the 
town  of  Winters  in  Yolo  county,  thence  along  the  foothills  and  up 
to  the  head  of  the  Capay.  valley  in  western  Yolo.  Many  tribulations 
followed  the  erection  of  this  road,  as  the  projectors  were  without 
means  and  depended  upon  the  land  owners  for  financial  assistance. 
George  W.  Scott  furnished  teams,  graders  and  men  to  grade  the 
road  from  Winters  to  Madison  and  subsequently  paid  a  debt  of 
many  thousands  of  dollars,  for  which  he  became  liable  as  endorser. 
Mr.  Scott  died  recently,  honored  by  all  who  knew  him,  the  possessor 
of  a  large  estate.  To  the  writer's  knowledge,  this  was  his  last  ex- 
perience as  an  endorser.    He  was  liberal  to  a  fault,  and  many  times 


74  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

subsequently  loaned  money  directly  to  people  desiring  assistance, 
rather  than  endorse  their  notes. 

If  the  building  of  the  road  was  a  calamity  for  several  indi- 
viduals, there  is  no  doubt  of  the  benefit  it  proved  to  be  to  the  county 
at  large,  as  it  opened  a  market  for  all  of  the  western  portion  of  the 
county  south  of  Cache  creek.  Prior  to  the  construction  of  these 
roads  the  Sacramento  river  supplied  the  only  means  by  wbich  out- 
side markets  could  be  reached.  Knight's  Landing  was  the  most 
accessible  shipping  point,  yet  there  was  a  good  deal  of  team  freight- 
ing during  the  dry  season  across  the  lowlands  lying  between  Wood- 
land and  the  city  of  Sacramento.  It  was  quite  customary  to  take 
to  Sacramento  a  wagonload  of  produce  and  return  with  merchandise 
for  household  use.  A  very  large  proportion  of  all  the  merchandise 
was  purchased  in  Sacramento,  to  the  injury  of  local  merchants. 

Knight's  Landing  became  an  important  shipping  point  for  all 
kinds  of  produce,  yet,  considering  the  possibilities  of  production, 
the  totals  were  small.  Farming  was  in  its  infancy.  For  many 
years  the  country  was  given  over  to  grazing.  The  first  trekers 
with  their  prairie  schooners  and  small  bands  of  stock  were  attracted 
by  the  extensive  growth  of  wild  oats  all  through  the  valley,  suffi- 
cient to  furnish  inexhaustible  feed.  They  pitched  their  tents  and 
herded  their  stock  and  drove  their  beef  cattle  to  Sacramento  for 
marketing.  Titles  were  gradually  acquired  by  pre-emption,  use  of 
script  and  through  Spanish  grants.  Many  thousands  of  acres 
of  the  best  lands  along  the  water  courses  had  been  granted  by 
Spain  and  Mexico.  On  Cache  creek  were  the  Harbin,  Gordon  and 
Hardy  grants ;  on  Putah  creek  was  the  grant  Jesus  Maria.  William 
Gordon,  the  grantee,  was  probably  the  earliest  settler  in  Yolo  county, 
although  the  Wolfskills,  who  held  under  the  Jesus  Maria  grant, 
might  dispute  this  statement.  The  Hardy  grant  was  long  in  liti- 
gation. The  holders  were  contesting  alleged  claims  of  non-resident 
heirs,  but  eventually  won  out  in  the  courts.  The  population  was 
necessarily  sparse  and  scattered. 

In  1868  the  lands  under  cultivation  were  quite  generally 
planted  to  wheat.  The  virgin  soil  yielded  abundantly,  and  the 
prices  paid  were  good.  With  stock  fattened  on  free  range  and 
crops  realized,  the  early  settlers'  prosperity  was  exceptional,  as 
is  proven  that  they  lived  and  gradually  increased  their  holdings 
while  they  were  paying  for  the  use  of  money,  interest  ranging  in 
rate  from  fifteen  per  cent  to  twenty-four  per  cent  per  annum. 

During  the  Spanish  possession  about  the  adobe  homes  small 
vineyards  had  been  planted  of  what  were  known  as  Mission  grapes. 
These  grapes  had  no  marketable  value,  but  were  for  home  consump- 
tion and  the  manufacture  of  a  heavy,  sweet  wine.  These  vineyards 
during  the  dry  season  offered  the  only  relief  to  the  broad  plains 
of  yellowing  grain  and  grasses.     Farming  was  extravagantly  con- 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  75 

ducted.  Ground  was  carelessly  broken  and  crops  carelessly  gath- 
ered. Machinery  stood  in  the  field  neglected  and  exposed  from  one 
season  to  another.  A  quite  uniform  custom  was  to  gather  two 
crops  from  one  plowing.  The  second  was  known  as  a  volunteer 
crop  and  often  yielded  abundantly  from  the  grain  wasted  at  the 
previous  harvesting.  Principally  to  meet  local  requirements,  in 
due  time  an  occasional  flour  mill  was  erected;  the  earliest,  I  believe, 
were  at  Woodland,  Yolo  (the  former  county  seat),  and  at  Madison. 
These  mills  were  never  profitable  as  investments.  The  Woodland 
and  Madison  mills  were  in  time  destroyed  by  fire.  The  Yolo  mill 
is  yet  standing,  but  for  many  years  has  been  out  of  commission. 
Steam  was  the  only  possible  available  power  for  grinding,  and  the 
heavy  cost  for  transportation  made  it  impossible  to  compete  with 
mills  at  Sacramento  and  other  river  points.  These  conditions  have 
continued  to  hamper  the  growth  of  Yolo  county  until  within  very 
recent  times.  Now,  with  sufficient  electric  power  and  reduced  trans- 
portation rates,  through  competition,  Woodland  is  making;  good  in 
manufacturing,  as  is  proven  by  the  success  of  its  large  flouring 
mills,  which  are  conducting  a  profitable  business  aggregating  in 
volume  $50,000  per  month  from  their  output. 

With  the  opening  of  the  first  railroad  mentioned  quite  an 
impetus  was  given  to  business  and  to  grain  raising.  A  strong 
market  for  grain  was  immediately  developed.  At  the  time  a  very 
large  proportion  of  wheat  was  taken  from  San  Francisco  to  Liver- 
pool in  sailing  vessels.  During  the  harvest  time  San  Francisco  bay 
was  filled  with  vessels  awaiting  cargo -charters,  and  at  times  the 
competition  between  vessel  owners  was  very  sharp.  Charters  were 
bartered  on  the  exchange,  and  often  big  profits  were  realized  by 
speculators.  The  ])rices  to  be  paid  for  ,a;rain  were  largely  deter- 
mined by  the  price  paid  for  the  charter.  When  the  ship  was  loaded 
it  was  quite  the  custom  to  sell  the  cargo  before  it  was  cleared; 
very  often  it  was  sold  when  afloat,  prior  to  its  arrival  at  destina- 
tion. Generally  payment  was  made  by  a  ninety-day  bill  drawn 
against  the  consignee.  The  banks  realized  a  profitable  business 
discounting  these  bills  for  the  cargo  sellers,  thereby  furnishing 
them  capital  for  new  ventures.  There  was  an  undoubted  element 
of  chance  in  the  purchase  of  cargoes,  as  the  market  was  bound  to 
fluctuate  between  the  time  of  selling  and  marketing.  I  have  in 
mind  one  local  speculator  who  practically  bankrupted  himself  by 
floating  cargoes  and  speculating  on  the  price  to  be  realized  at  time 
of  arrival  at  destination. 

There  were  many  grain  brokers  in  San  Francisco,  and  they 
established  purchasing  agencies  at  all  points  in  the  interior  where 
grain  was  marketed.  When  tonnage  was  plenty  and  charters  were 
low  the  rivalry  between  these  men  was  very  keen,  often  the  price 
of  wheat  was  forced  up  $4  or  $5  per  ton  within  a  few  days.     The 


76  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


ere  chartered  and  unless  immediately  loaded  there  was  a 
heavy  demurrage  charge  imposed  at  the  docks. 

With  an  active  demand,  the  temptation  of  the  producer  was  to 
hold  his  grain.  To  speculate  is  a  characteristic  of  the  Californian. 
The  habit  was  undoubtedly  formed  during  the  time  of  intense  ex- 
citement when  such  great  fortunes  were  won  and  lost  in  mines. 
Mr.  Friedlander  was  the  king  of  all  grain  operators  in  this  day, 
and  many  farmers  were  indebted  to  him  for  prices  paid  in  advance 
of  the  market.  He  had  a  perfectly  organized  connection  with  all 
parts  of  the  state  and  handled  a  large  proportion  of  the  grain 
raised. 

Among  the  pioneer  agents  in  Yolo  county  were  Frank  S.  Free- 
man of  Woodland,  Laugenour  and  Brownell  of  Knight's  Landing 
and  William  Dresbach  of  Davisville.  The  latter  achieved  fame 
and  reaped  disaster  from  his  attempt,  assisted  by  San  Francisco 
capital,  to  corner  the  wheat  market  in  California.  The  losses  were 
enormous,  but  the  money  lost  was  distributed  among  the  farmers,  to 
whom  he  paid  prices  for  grain  away  beyond  what  the  market 
would  justify.  Laugenour  and  Brownell  were  advantageously 
situated  at  Knight's  Landing,  on  the  banks  of  the  Sacramento  river, 
from  which  point  grain  was  shipped  to  tidewater  on  immense 
barges  in  tow  of  steamboats,  at  a  much  reduced  freight  rate.  All 
of  these  men  had  warehouses  for  the  storage  of  grain,  from  which 
they  realized  handsome  profits.  While  a  good  proportion  of 
grain  was  stored  in  these  local  warehouses,  a  large  quantity  was 
shipped  for  storage  to  tidewater.  There  were  certain  advantages. 
These  houses  were  generally  recognized  by  the  grain  exchange. 
When  stored  the  grain  was  graded,  and  the  storage  receipts  of  the 
better  quality  passed  in  the  stock  exchange.  ■  Then  the  grain  was 
on  hand  for  immediate  shipment,  and  it  was  well  known  that  the 
moist  coast  atmosphere  increased  the  weight. 

In  active  times  great  difficulty  was  realized  in  obtaining  cars 
for  shipment  from  the  interior.  At  such  times  there  was  no 
market  for  grain  stored  in  the  interior.  Since  the  robbing  of  the 
warehouses  several  years  ago  of  grain  stored  from  the  interior 
by  the  Eppingers  at  Port  Costa  but  little  grain  has  been  sent  to 
the  coast  for  storage. 

Yolo  county  was  at  the  time  a  distinctively  grain-raising  sec- 
tion and  profited  greatly.  Money  began  to  accumulate,  and  most  of 
it  was  sent  to  Sacramento  banks.  Some  of  it  was  deposited  with 
merchants.  Laugenour  and  Brownell  of  Knight's  Landing  and  F. 
S.  Freeman  especially  can  be  called  to  mind  as  custodians  of  quite 
large  amounts  from  time  to  time.  The  necessity  arose  for  a  local 
bank.  The  first  steps  were  taken  by  John  D.  Stephens,  a  pioneer 
settler  on  the  Gordon  grant,  who  with  his  brother  owned  large 
tracts  of  land.     Stock  to  the  amount  of  $100,000  was  easily  sub- 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  77 

scribed,  and  immediately  following,  in  November,  1868,  the  Bank 
of  Woodland  was  chartered.  In  the  February  following  its  doors 
were  opened  for  business.  This  bank  is  yet  in  existence;  from 
time  to  time  to  meet  increased  business  requirements  its  capital  has 
been  increased.  At  this  date  it  has  a  paid-up  capital  of  $1,000,000 
and  an  accumulated  ■  reserve  of  $250,000.  Mr.  Stephens  was 
elected  its  president  and  F.  S.  Freeman  its  vice-president.  The 
latter  immediately  transferred  his  business  to  the  bank  and  re- 
mained a  valuable  customer  to  the  time  of  his  death.  His  memory 
is  treasured  by  many  of  the  old  settlers.  He  carried  in  his  store 
everything  required  by  the  farmers,  from  grain  bags  to  machinery, 
and  it  was  not  uncommon  for  him  to  carry  debit  balances  from 
year  to  year  to  protect  his  customers  from  failure,  often  to  his  own 
disadvantage,  as  his  personal  fortune  was  moderate.  For  fourteen 
years  the  Bank  of  Woodland  was  without  opposition  and  prospered 
greatly.  With  increased  demand  for  grain,  local  brokerages  multi- 
plied; Messrs.  Laugenour  and  Brownell  removed  to  Woodland.  Mr. 
Brownell  became  associated  with  A.  J.  Hall  and  C.  T.  Bidwell  in  the 
grain  business.  Mr.  Laugenour  opened  a  loan  office  for  the  employ- 
ment of  his  own  fortune.  C.  S.  Thomas,  formerly  of  Knight's  Land- 
ing, associated  himself  with  W.  G.  Hunt  of  Woodland. 

Notwithstanding  the  fertility  of  its  soil,  the  development  of 
the  county  was  very  slow  and  from  one  decade  to  another  there 
was  no  appreciable  increase  in  population.  Lands  were  farmed  in 
large  tracts,  and  the  policy  of  the  owner  was  to  buy  out  the  hold- 
ings of  his  neighbor  rather  than  to  sell.  In  time  the  old  vineyards 
of  Mission  grapes  began  to  disappear.  They  were  supplanted  by 
many  imported  varieties,  which  had  value  for  shipment  and  drying, 
and  many  vineyards-  were  planted  to  grapes  suitable  for  wine.  It 
may  truthfully  be  said  that  in  this  industry  R.  B.  Blowers  was  the 
pioneer,  and  by  his  knowledge  and  advice,  freely  given,  added 
greatly  to  its  development.  Mr.  Blowers  is  said  to  be  the  pioneer 
raisin  maker  in  California.  His  muscat  raisins  brought  a  gold 
medal  at  the  Centennial  exposition  in  Philadelphia  in  1876.  On 
his  place  he  dug  large  wells,  which  demonstrated  the  fact  that  there 
is  underlying  the  surface  of  this  section  an  inexhaustible  supply  of 
pure  water. 

The  county  also  became  known  as  a  section  peculiarly  adapted 
to  the  raising  of  livestock.  In  different  lines  of  this  industry  Yolo 
county  men  have  achieved  national  reputations.  This  became  and 
continues  to  be  an  extensive  and  profitable  pursuit.  Frank  Bullars 
was  the  pioneer  in  fine  sheep  raising.  Long  since  deceased,  his 
sons  are  now  conducting  the  business.  William  B.  Gibson  was  the 
shorthorn  cattle  man;  he,  too,  has  departed  this  life,  but  his  son, 
T.  B.  Gibson,  accumulates  each  year  a  string  of  prizes  captured 
at  various  stock  exhibits.    George  W.  Woodard  was  the  horse  man 


78  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

Horses  bred  by  him  have  made  reputations  in  all  parts  of  the  coun- 
try. Dr.  H.  P.  Merritt  dealt  in  and  reared  mules  and  jackasses 
and  accumulated  a  large  estate. 

Among  the  most  notable  of  local  business  men  was  A.  D.  Por- 
ter— undoubtedly  the  most  public  spirited  resident  of  Woodland. 
For  many  years  he  conducted  a  profitable  grocery  business,  and  as 
his  fortune  accumulated  he  invested  large  portions  of  it  in  Wood- 
land property;  he  is  recognized  as  the  largest  property  owner 
in  the  city.  In  the  year  1883  he  conceived  the  idea  that  another 
bank  was  needed.  His  idea  was  that  it  should  become  a  popular 
institution,  and  he  started  out  with  the  determination  that  stock 
should  be  subscribed  in  every  section  of  the  county  and  that  no 
single  subscriber  should  be  allowed  more  than  $10,000  of  stock. 
Three  hundred  thousand  dollars  was  subscribed  within  a  short 
time.  The  bank  was  immediately  incorporated  under  the  name 
of  the  Bank  of  Yolo  and  opened  for  business  May  31,  1883. 
Dr.  H.  P.  Merritt  was  elected  president  and  W.  W.  Brownell  vice- 
president.  In  due  time,  with  his  indomitable  energy,  Mr.  Porter 
organized  the  first  savings  bank  in  the  county,  known  as  the  Yolo 
County  Savings  Bank,  in  which  institution  he  accepted  the  position 
of  president.  The  bank  now  has  upwards  of  $1,000,000  of  deposits. 
In  1893  the  Farmers'  and  Merchants'  Bank  was  organized,  princi- 
pally through  the  eiiergy  of  Hon.  M.  Diggs,  Hon.  R.  H.  Beamer  and 
Dr.  George  H.  Jackson.  This  institution  was  afterward  reincorpo- 
rated under  the  national  system  as  the  First  National  Bank  of 
Woodland,  and  it  maintains  under  the  same  management  the  Home 
Savings  Bank. 

Like  all  new  countries,  all  new  enterprises  developed  slowly 
in  Yolo  county.  It  required  years  of  infinite  patience  to  make  the 
raisin  industry  profitable ;  markets  had  to  be  sought  and  estab- 
lished. For  a  time  raisins  hardly  paid  for  the  packing.  There 
were  instances  where  producers  went  east  with  their  stock  and 
peddled  them  out.  Alfalfa  hay,  too,  at  times  hardly  paid  for  the 
cutting.  But  as  the  quantity  of  stock  increased  and  creameries 
were  established  and  alfalfa  meal  mills  were  erected,  the  demand 
became,  and  is  now,  great.  For  several  years  it  has  been  one  of 
the  most  profitable  crops. 

As  fruit  and  alfalfa  raising  began  to  be  profitable  there  sprang 
up  a  demand  for  small  tracts  of  land  at  increased  prices — prices 
wl i ieh  tempted  the  owners  to  sell.  In  all  parts  of  the  county  one 
can  now  find  comfortable  homes  on  small  tracts  of  intensely  culti- 
vated lands.  The  owners  are  thriving  because  the  cultivation  has 
become  diversified.  During  the  wheat  era  the  land  owner  had 
money  only  once  a  year,  when  his  grain  was  sold.  Now  there  is  a 
continual  stream  of  money  coming  to  him.  Twice  a  month  he  draws 
his    creamery    check.      The    Woodland    creamerv  alone  distributes 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  79 

$125,000  each  year  to  the  dairymen,  and  there  are  several  com- 
peting creameries.  The  land  owner  also  has  proceeds  from  eggs 
and  chickens  and  hogs  sold,  besides  the  five  crops  of  alfalfa  cut 
each  year  from  his  hay  field  under  irrigation. 

Referring  to  irrigation,  James  Moore  was  the  pioneer  irrigator 
in  the  county.  He  was  a  man  of  great  determination  and  tenacity 
of  purpose.  He  secured  water  rights  on  Cache  creek  and  erected 
and  maintained  ditches  for  irrigation  to  the  limit  of  his  means. 
For  years  he  was  litigating  with  claimants  above  him  on  Cache 
creek,  but  finally  obtained  his  undisputed  titles.  After  his  death 
his  interests  were  sold  to  a  corporation  known  as  the  Yolo  County 
Consolidated  Water  Company,  which  company  has  in  turn  sold  to 
others  of  sufficient  capital  to  make  this  one  of  the  finest  irrigating 
systems  in  the  country.  I  say  this  advisedly,  because  the  Cache 
creek  possibilities  for  irrigation  have  been  pronounced  by  govern- 
ment experts  to  be  the  most  satisfactory  of  any  in  the  west.  This 
creek  has  its  source  in  the  large  body  of  water  in  Lake  county 
known  as  Clear  Lake.  The  creek  divides  the  county  into  two  nearly 
equal  parts  and  the  lands  slope  from  the  creek  to  the  north  and 
south,  making  it  possible  to  irrigate  nearly  every  portion  of  the 
county  east  of  the  foothills,  and  much  of  it  lying  in  the  valley  of 
the  mountains.  The  creek  furnishes  water  for  irrigating  each 
year  until  July  1,  independently  of  dams;  at  this  time  the  new 
company  is  erecting  a  large  concrete  restraining  dam  which  will 
furnish  water  at  any  season  of  the  year.  In  addition  it  is  generally 
understood  to  be  the  intention  to  furnish  water  for  power. 

There  are  now  in  Woodland  six  banks  including  a  savings 
bank  recently  inaugurated  by  the  Bank  of  Yolo. 

The  following  is  a  condensed  summary  taken  from  the  sworn 
reports  under  date  of  August  14,  1912 :  Capital  stock  fully  paid, 
$2,602,100;  reserve  fund,  $573,025;  deposits,  $3,682,741;  total  of 
capital  and  reserve  and  deposits,  $6,857,766. 

The  population  of  the  city  is  probably  a  scant  four  thousand. 
The  banks  will  therefore  be  holding  in  money  an  amount  equal  to 
$1700  for  each  inhabitant.  In  the  town  of  Winters,  in  the  south- 
western portion  of  the  county,  there  are  two  banks,  and  in  the 
town  of  Davis  is  a  branch  of  the  Bank  of  Yolo. 

Davis  has  recently  come  into  public  notice  as  the  site  for  the 
State  Agricultural  School.  A  commission  after  inspecting  lands  in 
different  sections  decided  upon  the  location  at  Davis.  It  is  an  ex- 
ceptionally fine  body  of  land.  Fertility  of  the  land  considered, 
and  climatic  conditions,  the  judgment  of  experts  is  that  this  will 
become  one  of  the  best  schools  in  the  country.  At  this  session 
there  are  enrolled  one  hundred  and  fifty  pupils. 

For  manv  vears  it  has  been  the  dream  of  citizens  of  Woodland 


80  HISTOBY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

that  the  city  would  be  connected  by  rail  with  Sacramento,  lying 
eighteen  miles  to  the  east.  Many  years  ago  John  D.  Stephens 
started  a  subscription  list  to  build  from  the  head  of  Cache  creek 
canon  through  Woodland  to  Sacramento.  A  large  amount  of 
money  was  subscribed,  but  not  enough  to  carry  the  plan  through 
and  it  was  abandoned.  At  the  time  the  physical  difficulties  were 
almost  unsurmountable,  because  of  the  flood  waters  and  primitive 
methods  employed  in  construction.  Nothing  could  be  considered  but 
steam  roads.    Electric  roads  were  not  dreamed  of. 

A  little  more  than  a  year  ago  the  local  banks  were  approached 
to  furnish  money  by  purchasing  bonds  which  were  to  be  laid  upon 
a  proposed  electric  road  extending  from  Woodland  to  Sacramento. 
In  the  judgment  of  the  financiers  of  Woodland  there  could  nothing 
else  occur  which  would  so  greatly  stimulate  the  growth  of  Yolo 
county  or  contribute  to  the  advance  in  land  values.  The  proposi- 
tion was  a  serious  one  because  the  Yolo  flood  basin  would  have 
to  be  trestled  for  a  distance  of  two  miles,  and  extensive  levees  would 
have  to  be  erected  and  fortified  to  resist  the  current  of  the  great 
body  of  water  which  fills  the  basin  each  year. 

It  was  estimated  that  more  than  $750,000  would  be  needed  to 
complete  the  work,  but  a  company  of  San  Francisco  capitalists 
agreed  to  complete  the  road  and  equip  it  if  subscriptions  could  be 
obtained  for  this  amount  in  bonds.  The  Bank  of  Yolo,  the  Bank 
of  Woodland  and  the  Yolo  County  Savings  Bank  were  the  initial 
subscribers  for  large  blocks  of  the  bonds.  They  were  firm  in  the 
conviction  that  the  investment  would  prove  profitable.  In  a  short 
time  the  balance  of  the  bonds  were  sold  and  construction  begun. 
On  July  4,  1912,  the  road  was  so  nearly  completed  that  it  brought 
several  tbousand  people  from  Sacramento  to  celebrate  the  day  in 
Woodland.  Since  then  it  has  a  good  deal  more  than  paid  expenses 
— interest  charges,  and  sinking  fund  requirements — and  has  given 
the  residents  of  the  two  cities  an  hourly  daily  service,  the  trip  con- 
suming about  thirty  minutes. 

As  was  anticipated,  business  has  been  stimulated  by  this  enter- 
prise, and  the  prospects  of  Woodland  and  the  county  generally  are 
brighter  than  at  any  previous  time.  Extensive  improvements  are 
being  made  in  Woodland  in  public  and  private  buildings,  streets 
are  being  macadamized,  and  the  sentiment  is  decidedly  optimistic 
Within  three  years  the  best  lands  have  doubled  in  value,  yet 
the  demand  for  the  same  is  increasing.  Beet  culture  has  done 
much  to  stimulate  values.  There  are  possibly  six  thousand  acres 
under  cultivation,  the  yield  has  been  good  and  of  exceptional 
quality.  Through  the  example  set  by  beet  men,  many  fine  wells 
have  been  developed  for  purposes  of  irrigation  by  electric  power 
in  different  sections  of  the  county.  The  near  future  promises 
cheap   power,   as   several   power   companies   are   headed   for   Yolo 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  81 

county  and  are  seeking  franchises.  With  but  one  disastrous  excep- 
tion we  have  escaped  booms,  but  are  confident  of  a  bright  future 
and  are  firm  in  the  convictions  that  lands  are  reasonable  at  their 
present  values. 


CHAPTER  XIX 
FKEMONT 

A  history  of  the  cities  and  towns  of  Yolo  county  should  prop- 
erly begin  with  Fremont,  which,  though  it  does  not  exist  today,  was 
the  first  town  in  Yolo  county,  its  first  seat  of  government  and  once 
by  far  its  most  important  place  of  business. 

The  locating  and  founding  of  towns  in  Yolo  county,  like  most 
commonwealths,  was  inspired  at  the  beginning  of  development  by 
conditions  which  existed  particularly  relative  to  business  con- 
venience. The  pioneers  were  not  strong  on  beauty  of  surroundings, 
sanitation  and  such  things  which  in  later  years  constituted  im- 
portant factors  in  the  matter  of  selecting  sites  for  the  permanent 
habitation  of  men. 

Fremont  was  located  on  the  west  bank  of  the  Sacramento  river 
opposite  the  mouth  of  the  Feather  river,  which  at  this  point  emp- 
ties into  it,  by  Jonas  Spect,  a  speculator,  on  the  21st  of  March,  1849. 
If  the  conditions  Mr.  Spect  relied  upon  in  determining  the  location 
of  Fremont  had  prevailed,  that  historic  town  must  necessarily  have 
become  one  of  the  important  cities  of  the  Sacramento  valley. 

Its  founder  believed  when  he  stopped  there  that  he  had  reached 
the  head  of  navigation  of  both  streams,  the  Sacramento  and  the 
Feather  rivers.  His  purpose  was  to  ascend  the  Sacramento  river 
as  far  as  he  could  in  order  to  establish  a  trading  post  as  near  as 
possible  to  the  thriving  mining  camps  which  then  flourished  in  the 
mountains  from  which  flowed  these  streams.  He  brought  a  small 
schooner,  laden  with  suitable  merchandise,  from  San  Francisco, 
having  left  that  port,  via  San  Francisco  bay  and  the  Sacramento 
river,  March  1,  1849,  and  was  twenty-two  days  en  route.  Mr.  Spect 
left  the  vessel  at  Sacramento  on  the  twentieth  day  from  San  Fran- 
cisco and  proceeded  overland  across  the  country.  He  arrived  at 
the  junction  of  the  two  rivers  on  March  21  and  there  awaited  the 
arrival  of  the  schooner,  which  came  the  following  day. 

Mr.  Spect's  decision  as  to  the  site  for  his  trading  post  was 
influenced  wholly  by  an  obstacle  which  rendered  further  navigation 
impossible  and  which  also  forced  the  conclusion  that  he  had  reached 
the  head  of  navigation.  He  encountered  a  sandbar  across  both 
streams    over   which   the    schooner   could    not    pass.     There    being 


82  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

nothing  else  to  do,  be  ordered  the  cargo  removed  from  the  vessel, 
pending  which  he  erected  a  crude  structure  of  willows  and  canvas, 
brought  for  that  purpose,  and  there  and  then  opened  his  place  of 
business. 

Regarding  the  naming  of  the  town  there  is  nothing  authentic 
in  such  data  as  is  available.  That  it  was  named  in  honor  of  Gen- 
eral Fremont,  a  conspicuous  figure  in  the  early  history  of  Cali- 
fornia, there  can  be  no  doubt,  but  just  when  the  name  was  bestowed 
and  by  whom  remains  unknown. 

At  the  time  Mr.  Spect  landed  at  Fremont  he  was  probably  the 
only  white  inhabitant  of  what  is  now  Yolo  county.  The  thirty  or 
forty  white  people  who  had  previously  settled  upon  the  plains  lying 
between  the  river  and  the  Coast  Range  mountains,  some  thirty 
miles  to  the  west,  had,  upon  the  news  of  the  discovery  of  gold, 
left  their  homes  and  fields  the  previous  year  and  joined  the  mad 
rush  for  the  "gold  diggings"  in  the  mountains  to  the  east. 

Mr.  Spect  must  have  possessed  considerable  courage  to  invade 
an  unbroken  country,  uninhabited  save  by  a  small  band  of  Indians 
which  he  found  settled  upon  the  spot,  to  carry  a  commercial  cam- 
paign into  the  heart  of  the  interior  of  what  was  then  an  unknown 
country  and  to  set  up  his  place  of  business  where  there  were  no 
signs  of  life  other  than  the  Indians  and  the  wild  animals  which  in- 
habited those  parts.  He  must  have  rested  secure  in  his  firm  belief 
that  he  had  reached  the  highest  point  of  navigation  and  was  per- 
haps shrewd  enough  to  know  the  importance,  commercially,  of  a 
direct  water-way  communication  with  the  metropolis  of  the  state. 
Believing  these  things,  he  felt  that  the  j:>ost  he  had  established  was 
destined  to  become  an  important  place  of  trade. 

For  several  months  his  dreams  of  a  future  for  Fremont  seemed 
sure  of  materialization.  The  trading  post  rapidly  grew  into  a 
settlement  and  as  miraculously  developed  into  a  town.  At  one  time 
there  was  an  estimated  population  of  3,000  people  in  Fremont  and 
business  houses  of  considerable  magnitude  had  been  established. 
Fremont  was  in  fact  a  trade  center  for  much  of  the  business  that 
found  its  way  into  the  mining  regions  and  the  civilizing  influences 
of  school  and  church  were  felt.  An  idea  of  the  importance  of  the 
town  may  be  estimated  by  the  valuation  placed  upon  the  site  in  a 
genuine  offer  to  purchase  the  same,  although  the  title  was  seriously 
affected.  Fremont  stood  within  the  boundaries  of  the  Harbin  grant 
and  there  is  nothing  on  record  to  show  that  title  ever  passed  from 
the  grantee.  Notwithstanding  this  disparagement  William  McD 
Howard,  acting  for  the  firm  of  Melius,  Howard  &  Co.,  offered  Mr. 
Spect  and  T.  B.  Winston,  who  was  then  associated  with  Mr.  Spect 
as  a  partner,  the  sum  of  $150,000  for  their  town-site  privileges.  But 
let  us  take  up  these  matters  in  their  order. 

In  conjunction  with  his  store  Mr.  Spect  opened  a  hotel,  and 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  83 

these  soon  attracted  the  attention  of  not  only  the  mining  camps 
he  intended  to  reach,  but  also  capitalists  and  spectators.  The 
paths  of  travel  to  and  from  the  mines  were  diverted  that  way  and 
not  long  after  his  arrival  there  many  people  had  visited  Fremont. 
There  was  perhaps  another  factor  which  influenced  the  stream  of 
traffic  toward  Fremont.  The  Feather  river  at  that  point  was  ford- 
able  at  its  mouth,  perhaps  on  account  of  the  sandbar  previously 
mentioned,  and  the  Indians  contrived  to  ferry  even  loaded  wagons 
across  the  Sacramento  river  by  using  their  canoes  and  a  skiff. 
Wagons  were  loaded  upon  four  canoes,  one  wheel  in  each,  and  thus 
paddled  across  the  river.  This  ferry,  primitive  though  it  was, 
afforded  transportation  over  the  waterway  which  constituted  an 
obstacle  which  must  have  caused  those  early  pioneers  much  incon- 
venience in  their  migrations  to  and  from  the  mines. 

During  the  remainder  of  the  year  1849  the  population  of 
Fremont  was  materially  increased  by  the  arrival  of  several  parties, 
attracted,  no  doubt,  by  the  spirit  of  adventure  and  laudable  am- 
bition to  acquire  wealth.  About  the  first  of  these  was  as  expedition 
from  Oregon,  headed  by  John  E.  Bradley,  a  Cumberland  Presby- 
terian minister,  who  preached  to  the  people  of  the  new  settlement 
for  several  weeks.  Mr.  Bradley  afterward  settled  in  Santa  Clara, 
where  he  resided  as  late  as  1870.  Families  arrived  from  across  the 
plains  and  from  the  eastern  states  and  in  July,  1849,  a  corps  of 
civil  engineers  arrived  from  Louisiana.  Among  them  was  William 
J.  Frieson,  who  afterward  became  a  resident  of  Knights  Landing. 
With  the  increase  of  population  the  business  houses  also  multi- 
plied and  before  the  close  of  the  year  mercantile  establishments 
were  plentiful,  as  were  also  saloons  and  gambling  houses.  The 
first  lawyer  in  Yolo  county  was  C.  P.  Hester,  who  located  at  Fre- 
mont. There  was  no  state  or  county  organization  at  that  time 
and  law  business,  in  a  country  where  every  man  made  and  executed 
his  own  laws,  must  necessarily  have  been  very  slack,  but  not- 
withstanding this  Mr.  Hester  had  the  temerity  to  hang  out  his 
shingle.  He  was  awarded  in  after  years  by  being  elected  judge  of 
the  third  judicial  district. 

Other  professional  men  and  women  made  their  appearance  at 
Fremont  contemporaneously  with  Mr.  Hester.  Dr.  R.  W.  Murphy, 
afterward  a  practitioner  in  Saci'amento,  established  an  office  in 
Fremont  and  although  the  early  records  are  silent  on  the  subject, 
it  is  only  a  reasonable  conclusion  that  the  doctor  enjoyed  a  more 
lucrative  practice  as  a  result  of  the  self-made  and  self-executed 
laws  than  did  Mr.  Hester,  though  the  latter  was  a  lawyer.  Miss 
Matilda  McCord,  of  Bloomington,  Ind.,  opened  the  first  school  at 
Fremont  in  the  spring  of  1849  and  the  first  regular  church  was 
established  by  Rev.  Isaac  Owen,  a  missionary  preacher  from  In- 
diana.   About  the  same  time  C.  H.  Gray  and  H.  B.  Wood,  with  a 


84  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

company  of  employes,  arrived  at  Fremont  with  the  frame-work  of 
a  building,  in  sections,  which  had  been  shipped  from  Bedford, 
Mass.,  via  Cape  Horn,  on  the  whaling  vessel  William  Henry.  They 
were  also  supplied  with  a  stock  of  goods  and  after  setting  up  their 
building,  opened  therein  a  general  merchandise  store.  Mr.  Gray 
afterward  served  several  terms  as  sheriff  of  Yolo  county  and  his 
partner,  Mr.  Wood,  became  the  proprietor  of  a  hardware  business 
in  Woodland,  wbere  he  died  about  twenty  years  ago.  The  business 
section  of  Fremont  received  further  augmentation,  soon  afterward, 
by  the  arrival  of  a  large  cargo  of  goods  under  the  care  of  Henry 
Hare  Hartley,  who  represented  a  large  company  of  capitalists. 
These  goods  were  shipped  from  Bangor,  Me.,  around  the  Horn 
and  were  unloaded  from  the  vessel  at  Fremont.  Mr.  Hartley, 
like  many  of  the  pioneer  merchants,  eventually  found  his  way  into 
politics  and  afterward  served  as  county  judge. 

The  first  ■  homicide  in  Yolo  county  occurred  at  Fremont  in 
October,  1849,  when  a  soldier  who  arrived  with  a  troop  guarding 
a  supply  train  on  its  way  to  Benicia,  became  intoxicated  and 
abusive  and  in  an  altercation  with  a  gambler  was  killed.  The 
slayer  was  not  arrested  and  the  incident  caused  only  a  temporary 
ripple  of  excitement. 

The  first  record  of  anything  political  in  Yolo  county  was  an 
election  in  November,  1849,  under  a  proclamation  issued  by  Pro- 
visional Governor  Riley  for  the  purpose  of  electing  delegates  to  a 
constitutional  convention.  It  appears  that  the  importance  of  Fre- 
mont as  a  center  of  population  was  overlooked  by  his  Excellency 
in  the  proclamation,  but  notwithstanding  the  people  of  Fremont 
held  an  election,  and  although  more  votes  were  cast  there  than  in 
all  the  remaining  territory  of  the  Sonoma  district,  into  which  Yolo 
county  had  been  apportioned,  the  ballots  were  not  finally  consid- 
ered in  determining  the  result  of  the  election. 

According  to  C.  P.  Sprague,  in  his  history  of  Yolo  county,  pub- 
lished in  1870,  tardy  recognition  of  the  importance  of  Fremont  was 
made  by  the  selection  of  Jonas  Spect,  its  founder,  as  a  member  of 
the  senate  from  Sonoma  district  in  the  first  legislature  of  the 
state,  which  followed  closely  upon  the  adoption  of  the  Constitution. 
Mr.  Sprague  was  not  sure  upon  this  subject,  he  having  been  unable 
to  verify  the  report  with  any  documentary  record,  but  it  is  more 
than  likely  true. 

P^remont  was  made  the  county  seat  of  Yolo  countv  bv  the  act 
of  legislature,  February  18,  1850  (Statutes  of  1850,  Page  61), 
which  also  established  the  legal  origin  of  the  county.  By  an  act  of 
March  16,  the  same  year,  the  state  was  divided  into  judicial  dis- 
tricts, the  counties  of  Yolo,  Sutter  and  Yuba  constituting  the  eighth 
district,  and  so  it  came  to  pass  that  the  first  session  of  any  regularly 
constituted  court  of  justice  in  Yolo  county  was  held  at  Fremont  in 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  85 

September,  1850,  by  W.  R.  Turner,  district  judge,  who  served  as 
such  only  a  short  time,  the  state  being  soon  afterward  redistricted. 

At  this  session  of  the  court  there  were  two  cases  upon  the 
calendar,  one  criminal  in  character  and  the  other  civil.  The 
records  show  an  indictment  returned  against  Emma  Place,  which 
upon  motion  of  the  district  attorney  was  dismissed  because  the 
necessary  witnesses  could  not  be  found.  The  civil  suit  was  entitled 
Austin  &  Johnson  vs.  Conwillard  et  al.  The  last  term  of  the  court 
was  held  at  Fremont,  October  2,  1850. 

The  beginning  of  the  end  of  Fremont  came  in  the  winter  of 
1849,  when  the  town  was  only  several  months  old.  The  excessive 
precipitation  of  rain  and  snow  resulted  in  "high  water"  in  both 
rivers  and  a  corresponding  increased  velocity  of  the  currents  with 
the  result  that  the  sand-bars  were  washed  away.  This  action  opened 
navigation  in  both  streams  for  many  miles  inland  and  with  it  com- 
menced the  onward  march  of  commercial  development  and  civiliza- 
tion. Towns  sprung  into  existence  much  nearer  the  scenes  of  mining 
activities,  which  then  constituted  the  principal  sources  of  trade,  and 
business  in  Fremont  simultaneously  commenced  to  decline.  One 
year  later  there  was  practically  nothing  left  of  this  thriving  town 
other  than  a  name  and  memories,  fond,  sad  and  otherwise.  Many  of 
the  frame  buildings  were  moved  to  Knights  Landing,  a  town  which 
had  sprung  into  existence  a  few  miles  farther  up  the  river,  and  to 
Marysville,  in  Butte  county,  and  to  Sacramento. 

All  this,  however,  did  not  come  to  pass  without  efforts  "upon  the 
part  of  its  people  to  preserve  the  importance  of  Fremont.  Realizing 
that  its  chances  as  a  great  commercial  center  had  passed  with  the 
disappearance  of  the  sand-bars  in  the  rivers,  the  residents  con- 
trived to  make  it  at  least  a  center  for  local  retail  trade,  but  in  the 
meantime  the  settlements  of  Knights  Landing  and  Washington, 
the  latter  situated  on  the  Yolo  side  of  the  river  opposite  Sacra- 
mento, began  to  attract  attention,  and  perhaps  because  of  their 
closer  proximity  to  the  then  populated  district  of  the  county  (the 
people  having  resumed  the  pursuit  of  stock-raising  in  the  interior) 
soon  captured  most  of  the  trade  which  had  been  left  to  Fremont. 
And  thus  it  came  to  pass  that  "the  city  builded  upon  the  sands" 
of  the  rivers,  fell  and  history  had  repeated  itself. 

The  people  of  Fremont,  in  their  desperate  effort  to  keep  their 
town  upon  the  map,  resorted  to  the  proverbial  power  of  the  legis- 
lature and  in  this  we  have  the  first  record  of  "lobbying"  in  Yolo 
county.  Although  the  voters  of  Yolo  county  on  March  25,  1851, 
elected  to  remove  the  county-seat  from  Fremont  to  Washington, 
the  records  of  the  legislature  show  that  four  weeks  later  that  dis- 
tinguished body  declared  Fremont  to  still  be  the  seat  of  govern- 
ment for  Yolo  county  and  in  pursuance  with  that  act  the  court  of 
sessions,  on  Mav  22.  1851,  made  the  following  order: 


86  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

"It  is  ordered  by  the  court  that  the  seat  of  justice  of  this 
county  shall  be  at  Fremont — the  legislature  of  the  state  of  Cali- 
fornia having  on  the  twenty-fifth  day  of  April,  1851,  passed  a  law 
to  that  effect,  which  law,  having  been  passed  subsequent  to  the 
election  held  on  the  twenty-fifth  day  of  March,  1851,  for  the  re- 
moval of  the  county-seat  of  said  county,  annuls  said  election." 

Notwithstanding  this  order  there  were  no  sessions  of  the  court 
held  at  Fremont  after  July  of  the  same  year,  and  in  humble  sub- 
mission to  the  will  of  the  people,  the  court  comfortably  established 
itself  at  Washington,  where  it  held  its  first  session  one  month  later. 

And  thus  endeth  the  history  of  Fremont.  At  this  late  day  many 
people  of  Knights  Landing  and  Woodland  are  wont  in  pleasant 
weather  to  visit  the  site  of  the  first  town  of  Yolo  county  for  the 
purpose  of  outing  and  fishing.  There  is  nothing  there  now  other 
than  those  things  furnished  by  nature  for  the  adornment  of  mother 
earth.  Where  was  once  a  lively  town,  there  is  now  only  the  placid 
bosom  of  the  mighty  river  wending  its  way  leisurely  between  banks 
studded  with  tree  and  vine  to  the  ocean.  Where  once  prevailed 
the  noises  of  thriving  traffic,  there  is  now  only  the  musical  hum  of 
insects  and  the  songs  of  nature,  except  at  such  times  as  pleasure 
seekers  invade  the  spot  and  contribute  sounds,  harmonious  and 
otherwise,  of  the  human  voice. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  87 

CHAPTER  XX 

WASHINGTON 

With  the  dissolution  of  Fremont,  Washington,  a  settlement  upon 
the  Sacramento  river  opposite  the  city  of  Sacramento,  became  the 
principal  scene  of  judicial,  political  and  commercial  activity  in 
Yolo  county.  Its  proximity  to  Sacramento  and  the  conveniences  of 
transportation  afforded  by  the  river,  constituted  the  natural  advan- 
tages which  influenced  the  trend  of  progress  in  that  direction.  The 
removal  of  the  county-seat,  as  has  already  been  mentioned,  con- 
tributed of  course  in  necessarily  compelling  the  transaction  of  all 
county  business  there. 

James  McDowell  was  the  first  settler  in  that  territory  which 
afterward  became  the  town  of  Washington,  although  it  was  his 
widow,  so  far  as  accomplishment  was  concerned,  who  was  really  the 
founder  of  the  town.  It  was  she  who  bestowed  its  name  and  filed 
the  first  and  subsequent  plats  of  the  town.  The  first  of  these  was 
filed  for  record  in  February,  1850. 

Mr.  McDowell  purchased  six  hundred  acres  of  land  on  the  Yolo 
side  of  the  Sacramento  river,  from  John  Schwartz.  The  latter 
claimed  to  have  a  grant  to  the  land,  but  subsequent  events  indicated 
that  the  title  was  not  all  that  it  should  have  been,  and  years  later, 
after  Mr.  McDowell  had  passed  away,  his  widow  caused  a  pre-emp- 
tion to  be  entered  upon  one  hundred  and  sixty  acres  of  land,  which 
holding  included  the  site  of  the  town  of  Washington. 

Of  the  tract  purchased  from  Schwartz,  for  which,  by  the  way, 
Mr.  McDowell  paid  only  twelve  and  one-half  cents  per  acre,  he 
fenced  one  acre  in  the  northwest  corner  and  in  the  inclosure 
erected  a  log  cabin.  He  crossed  the  river  from  Sutter's  Fort  in 
August,  1847,  and  with  his  family  took  up  his  residence  in  the  cabin. 

In  1848  Kit  and  J.  B.  Chiles  with  J.  C.  Davis  settled  upon  some 
land  just  north  of  McDowell's  possession  and  there  immediately  en- 
sued much  controversy  between  them  as  to  the  exact  location  of  the 
dividing  line.  Mr.  McDowell  died  from  wounds  in  1849.  There  is 
no  mention  in  the  early  records  of  how  he  received  those  wounds, 
but  in  view  of  the  bitter  strife  which  continued  between  his  widow 
and  said  adverse  claimants  of  possession  to  the  land  in  controversy, 
the  inference  is  obvious. 

The  first  deed  to  be  recorded  in  Yolo  county  was  one  in  which 
Mrs.  McDowell  conveyed  lot  4  of  block  4,  Washington,  to  William 
Dearbour  and  Jeremiah  Callahan  for  a  consideration  of  $500.  The 
deed  was  filed  April  4,  1850. 

The  plat  recorded  by  Mrs.  McDowell  in  some  mysterious  way 


88  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

became  lost,  but  fortunately  sbe  possessed  a  copy.  In  September, 
1862,  another  plat  was  made  of  the  town  and  again,  in  February, 
1869,  an  amended  plat  of  the  town  was  recorded.  In  each  of  these 
plats  the  location  and  names  of  the  streets  were  changed,  but  the 
last  filed  has  ever  since  been  recognized  as  the  official  plat  and  the 
streets  named  therein  have  become  permanently  fixed.  The  records 
show  the  first  unquestioned  title  to  any  land  in  the  townsite  of 
Washington  to  have  been  a  patent  issued  by  the  state  of  California 
to  Dr.  C.  E.  Taylor  under  date  of  February  3,  1869.  Dr.  Taylor 
had  in  the  meantime  married  the  widow  of  James  McDowell. 

In  August,  1849,  the  population  of  Washington  was  augmented 
by  the  arrival  of  Dr.  Presley  Welch  and  Col.  J.  H.  Lewis,  who 
cleared  and  settled  upon  one  hundred  and  sixty  acres  of  land  ad- 
joining the  south  line  of  the  McDowell  property.  In  December  of 
the  same  year  Job  N.  Peck  purchased  a  third  interest  in  this  prop- 
erty and  the  joint  owners  erected  a  "shake"  house  and  engaged 
in  the  dairy  business.  Their  house  was  the  second  structure  erected 
in  Washington,  the  first  being  a  log  house  built  by  Mr.  McDowell 
and  which  was  then  occupied  by  his  widow.  Kit  Chiles  and  his  fam- 
ily resided  in  a  tent  on  the  bank  of  the  river.  Mrs.  McDowell  soon 
afterward  erected  a  frame  house  on  the  north  side  of  what  is  now 
Harriet  street,  into  which  she  moved  her  family,  deserting  the 
log  cabin. 

The  fourth  house  built  in  Washington  was  made  of  zinc  and 
was  erected  at  the  corner  of  Second  and  Ann  streets  and  the  fifth 
was  the  Olive  Branch  hotel,  built  and  conducted  by  a  man  named 
Bryant,  opposite  the  new  residence  of  Mrs.  McDowell.  The  old 
records  inform  us  that  the  dimensions  of  this  pioneer  hostelry  were 
22x'A2  feet.  This  hotel  was  afterward  purchased  at  a  cost  of 
$6,000  by  Amos  Waring,  who  took  possession  of  it  on  July  4,  1850. 
In  the  meantime  Doctors  Heath  and  Brown  had  built  homes  for 
themselves,  the  former  close  to  the  ship-yard  and  the  latter 
opposite  the  old  cemetery. 

The  steady  increase  in  the  population  of  the  river  town  received 
something  of  a  check  in  the  summer  of  1850,  when  an  epidemic 
of  cholera  appeared  among  the  inhabitants.  The  dreaded  disease 
carried  off  seven  victims  and  for  a  time  threatened  the  whole  set- 
tlement with  annihilation,  but  by  resorting  to  heroic  measures  the 
sturdy  people  finally  checked  the  disease  for  the  time.  Two  years 
later  it  reappeared,  but  was  less  malignant  and  therefore  not  so 
disastrous.  Dr.  Heath  fell  a  victim  to  the  epidemic  which  he 
fought  so  valiantly  and  he  was  buried  with  the  honor  which  be- 
longed to  him  by  reason  of  his  untiring  and  unselfish  conduct  in 
the  face  of  danger. 

Up  to  1850  J.  B.  Chiles  and  others  operated  a  rope  ferry  across 
the  river  between  Washington  and   Sacramento,  but   at  the   July 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  89 

meeting  of  the  court  of  sessions  of  that  year  the  franchise  for  the 
said  ferry  was  given  to  I.  N.  Hoag  for  one  year  at  a  cost  of  $800 
per  annum  as  license.  The  former  owners  of  the  ferry  were  appli- 
cants for  the  license,  but  through  some  technicality  were  unsuccess- 
ful. The  court  of  sessions  officially  fixed  the  rate  of  tolls  for  the 
bridge  as  follows:  Loaded  wagon,  $2;  light  wagon,  $1.50;  loose 
stock,  per  head,  fifty  cents;  pack  animals,  seventy-five  cents;  horse 
and  rider,  $1;  sheep,  per  head,  twelve  and  one-half  cents;  freight 
per  cwt.,  twelve  cents;  lumber  per  1,000  feet,  $5;  foot  passengers, 
twenty-five  cents. 

Mr.  Hoag  after  considerable  trouble  and  expense  converted 
the  motive  power  of  the  ferry  into  steam.  His  venture  in  a  business 
way  was  a  big  success,  the  receipts  for  three  months  in  the  fall  of 
that  year  aggregating  $27,000.  He  opened  negotiations  for  the  sale 
of  the  ferry,  together  with  some  other  real  property  on  the  river 
soon  afterward  and  although  the  bargain  progressed  as  far  as  the 
agreement  upon  the  price,  which  was  $40,000,  it  fell  through  on 
account  of  some  trouble  regarding  the  land  and  the  amount  of  fuel 
that  was  included  in  the  bargain.  About  this  time  competing  ferries 
were  established  and  the  business  declined  for  everybody. 

Toward  the  close  of  the  year  1850  the  people  of  Washington, 
whose  numbers  had  rapidly  increased,  believed  that  their  town  was 
destined  to  become  a  city.  This  prophesy  was  not  without  founda- 
tion. The  topographical  situation  on  the  Yolo  side  of  the  river  gave 
promise  of  rapid  growth  and  conditions  which  then  existed  indi- 
cated that  Washington  was  the  favored  site  for  the  habitation  of 
men.  In  the  winter  of  that  year  the  city  of  Sacramento  was  flooded, 
while  Washington  remained  high  and  dry.  Again  in  1852  the  river 
people  had  severe  floods  to  contend  with.  From  an  old  print  we 
learn  that  "with  the  exception  of  the  Indian  mounds  and  high 
places  there  was  no  land  along  the  river  between  Knights  Landing 
and  Benicia  that  was  not  inundated." 

It  was  not,  however,  until  later  years  that  the  people  of 
Washington  suffered  much  from  high  water.  With  the  construction 
of  levees  on  the  Sacramento  side  of  the  river  and  the  gradual 
filling  in  of  the  river  bed  with  debris  from  the  placer  mines  in 
the  mountains  there  came  a  time  when  they  were  compelled,  for 
their  protection,  to  construct  levees  around  the  town.  These  em- 
bankments have  been  maintained  ever  since  at  much  cost  to  Wash- 
ington, but  although  there  has  been  very  high  water  in  the  tules 
adjacent  to  the  town,  the  water  has  been  effectively  kept  out  of  it. 

In  the  meantime  most  of  the  traffic  from  the  north  and  west 
of  Yolo  county  passed  through  the  town  of  Washington  and  it 
became  quite  an  important  commercial  center.  A  census  taken  in 
1852  gave  the  following  statistics  for  the  town:  Four  hotels,  two 
general  stores,  three  laundries,  a  postoffiee  and  blacksmith  shops. 


90  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

According  to  a  private  record  compiled  by  Jonas  Spect,  the  foun- 
der of  Fremont  and  a  candidate  for  state  senator,  there  were  sixty 
votes  cast  in  Washington  in  1851,  reckoning  on  established  tables 
that  would  have  given  the  population  of  the  town  about  three 
hundred. 

Isaac  Owen  held  the  first  divine  service  in  Washington  in  1850. 
He  was  succeeded  by  Rev.  M.  C.  Briggs,  who  afterward  became  bag- 
gage master  for  the  California  Pacific  Railroad  Company.  Rev.  O. 
C.  Wheeler  and  Rev.  H.  B.  Shelden  were  also  among  the  early 
preachers  in  Washington.  The  latter  was  succeeded  in  1853  by  a 
young  man  named  Benham  of  the  Methodist  Episcopal  church,  who 
came  from  Brooklyn,  N.  Y.  He  was  afterward  drowned  in  Cache 
creek  while  attempting  to  ford  it  during  a  freshet.  The  Monumental 
Class  of  the  United  Brethren  church  was  organized  in  1859. 

A  private  school,  probably  the  third  institution  of  learning 
in  Yolo  county,  was  established  in  Washington  in  1850,  with  Mr. 
Wheaton  as  teacher.  Mr.  Wheaton  was  a  lawyer  by  calling  and 
he  afterward  engaged  in  the  practice  of  his  profession  in  San 
Francisco.  The  school  was  maintained  intermittently,  terms  being 
held  from  time  to  time,  and  in  1855  the  following  statistical  figures 
were  s'iven  in  a  record  furnished  the  county;  number  of  children 
between  the  ages  of  four  and  eighteen  years,  sixty-four;  number  of 
orphans,  eleven;  teachers,  M.  A.  Wheaton  and  Emma  Alexander; 
salary,  $80  per  month;  trustees,  H.  C.  Griffith,  I.  N.  Hoag,  E.  C. 
Taylor. 

The  political  history  of  Washington  was  confined  principally  to 
the  efforts  of  the  people  to  retain  the  seat  of  government  there. 
In  1851  an  election  was  held  in  the  county  to  determine  the  location 
of  the  county-seat  and  a  strenuous  campaign  ensued  with  the  people 
of  Fremont  opposed  to  those  of  Washington.  A  majority  vote  was 
cast  in  favor  of  the  latter  town  and  the  first  meeting  of  the  court 
of  sessions  was  held  in  the  new  county  seat  in  July  of  that  year. 

Again  in  May,  1855,  an  effort  was  made  to  wrest  from  the 
river  town  the  seat  of  government,  but  the  people  were  not  ripe  for 
a  change  and  returned  a  verdict  through  the  ballot  box  in  favor  of 
Washington  against  its  ambitious  rival  river  town,  Knights 
Landing. 

By  an  act  of  the  legislature  of  March  25,  1857,  Washington 
lost  the  county  seat  for  a  period  of  four  years,  it  being  transferred 
to  a  village  on  the  banks  of  Cache  creek  called  Cacheville.  In  this 
the  legislature  was  probably  actuated  through  arguments  regarding 
the  geographical  situation,  Cacheville  being  situated  in  about  the 
center  of  the  county,  but  the  gentlemen  who  constituted  that  august 
body  four  years  later  thought  better  of  the  action  of  their  prede- 
cessors and  by  an  act  regularly  passed,  re-transferred  the  county 
seat  to  AVashington. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  91 

By  this  time,  however,  the  people  of  the  county  took  a  hand 
in  the  game  and  after  the  records  of  the  county  had  reposed  snugly 
in  the  old  archives  at  Washington  for  one  year  from  the  time  of 
the  last  act  of  the  legislature,  they  removed  the  county-seat  to 
Woodland,  a  town  more  favorably  situated,  which  had  been  growing 
rapidly,  while  the  older  towns  were  fighting  for  the  county  seat,  and 
it  has  remained  there  ever  since. 

The  permanent  removal  of  the  county-seat  to  Woodland  very 
naturally  had  a  depressing  effect  upon  the  people  of  Washington 
and  a  corresponding  effect  upon  the  business  of  the  town.  That 
together  with  the  railroad  had  much  to  do  with  the  defeat  of  the 
hopes  of  the  Washington  people,  for  until  late  years,  the  growth 
of  that  picturesque  river  town  was  not  what  early  conditions  gave 
promise  of.  Contrary  to  expectations,  the  establishment  of  more 
convenient  and  cheaper  transportation  across  the  river  resulted 
in  benefits  to  Sacramento  alone,  which  began  to  grow  when  the 
railroad  company  established  its  shops  and  yards  in  that  city. 
Overshadowed  by  a  city  from  which  it  is  separated  only  by  the 
river,  Washington  is  commercially  at  the  mercy  of  Sacramento. 
Its  people  do  most  of  their  trading  in  Sacramento,  attend  its 
churches  and  even  belong  to  the  fraternal  societies  of  the  larger 
city.  In  fact  many  of  the  residents  of  Washington  earn  their  living 
in  Sacramento,  working  in  the  railroad  shops  and  other  places  of 
business. 

Since  the  railroad  and  transportation  facilities  across  the  river 
constitute  such  important  factors  in  the  history  of  Washington  a 
paragraph  or  two  regarding  the  evolution  from  the  ferry  to  bridge 
seems  pertinent  in  this  work.  For  the  following  facts  the  author  is 
indebted  to  T.  E.  Harrison,  a  pioneer  resident  of  Washington. 

The  first  bridge  across  the  Sacramento  river  between  Washing- 
ton and  Sacramento  was  built  by  Major  Gillis,  John  Q.  Brown  and 
Johnson  Price,  under  a  franchise  issued  jointly  by  Yolo  and  Sacra- 
mento counties.  They  began  the  work  in  1856  and  finished  the  struc- 
ture the  following  year  at  a  cost  of  $65,000.  Under  this  franchise 
they  were  privileged  to  exact  toll  for  traffic,  and  foot  passengers 
were  charged  ten  cents  each  for  crossing. 

Just  before  the  expiration  of  their  twenty  year  franchise  they 
sold  their  interest  in  the  bridge  to  the  California  Pacific  Railroad 
Company,  which  converted  it  into  a  railroad  bridge.  This  was  done 
in  the  year  1875.  It  soon  afterward  became  the  property  of  the 
Southern  Pacific  Railroad  Company,  into  which  the  former  cor- 
poration was  finally  merged. 

About  the  year  1878  there  appears  upon  the  records  of  the 
court  of  sessions  an  order  authorizing  certain  members  of  that  body 
to  treat  with  the  officials  of  the  railroad  company  to  the  end  that 
free  use  .of  the  bridge  might  be  had  for  the  people  of  the  river 


92  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

section  and  the  negotiations  finally  terminated,  several  years  after- 
ward, in  the  construction  of  a  joint  bridge  in  which  the  railroad 
company  and  the  counties  of  Yolo  and  Sacramento  shared  the  ex- 
pense. In  this  manner  the  people  were  assured  free  transportation 
across  the  river.  The  railroad  company  has  changed  the  location 
of  the  bridge  four  different  times  since  acquiring  the  property 
and  is  now  engaged  in  the  construction  of  a  new  magnificent  bridge, 
with  the  co-operation  of  both  counties.  This  bridge  will  cost  when 
completed  in  the  neighborhood  of  $800,000,  and  the  cost  to  Yolo 
county  will  be  about  $45,000.  It  has  the  heaviest  drawn  span  of  any 
bridge  in  the  world.  It  is  constructed  almost  entirely  of  concrete 
and  steel  and  gives  promise  of  serving  all  for  a  great  many  years 
to  come. 

During  the  last  few  years  there  has  been  a  marked  improve- 
ment in  the  conditions  of  Washington.  The  population  has  in- 
creased materially,  and  naturally  property  values  have  increased. 
This  was  brought  about,  no  doubt,  through  a  corresponding  im- 
provement in  Sacramento,  which  during  the  last  decade  has  made 
wonderful  progress  along  all  lines  of  public  improvement.  The 
cheaper  rents  and  property  in  Washington,  together  with  the  bet- 
ter water,  the  free  transportation  across  the  river  and  its  close 
proximity  to  the  shops  and  yards  of  the  Southern  Pacific  Railroad 
Company,  which  are  situated  principally  on  or  close  to  the  opposite 
bank  of  the  Sacramento  river,  has  induced  many  people  employed 
on  the  Sacramento  side  in  the  down-town  districts,  to  take  up 
their  residence  in  the  Yolo  town. 

At  the  present  time  the  prospects  of  Washington  give  better 
promise  of  the  materialization  of  the  hopes  of  its  pioneer  residents 
than  at  any  period  since  the  railroad  company  dashed  those  hopes 
by  establishing  its  works  in  Sacramento.  The  advent  of  the  North- 
ern Electric  Railroad  Company  in  Yolo  county  is  bound  to  do  much 
for  Washington.  In  addition  to  the  immense  bridge  just  completed 
by  the  Southern  Pacific  Company,  there  is  also  a  bridge  of  almost 
equal  proportion  and  cost  about  completed  by  the  electric  road  a 
short  distance  down  the  river.  This  bridge  will  have  an  entrance 
into  Sacramento  at  the  foot  of  M  street.  In  this  structure  the 
counties  of  Yolo  and  Sacramento  will  have  an  interest  and  an 
overhead  roadway  for  all  traffic.  It  was  built  jointly  by  the  two 
counties  and  the  railroad  company  under  a  similar  agreement  as 
obtained  with  the  other  bridge. 

The  Electric  Railroad  Company  has  acquired  considerable 
property  lying  just  below  the  town  of  Washington  and  has  prom- 
ised Yolo  county  to  establish  thereon  its  railroad  shops  and  yards 
in  consideration  for  the  county's  affiliation  in  the  matter  of  build- 
ing the  bridge.  This  acquisition  of  property  for  which  the  railroad 
company  paid  $1000  per  acre  has  had  the  effect  of  enhancing  prop- 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  93 

erty  values  all  along  the  river  and  especially  in  the  town  of  Wash- 
ington, where  land  on  the  river  is  worth  now  between  $200  and 
$250  per  front  foot. 

A  new  enterprise  launched  within  the  past  few  months  has  also 
added  impetus  to  the  boom  in  Washington.  The  West  Sacramento 
Electric  and  Reclamation  Company,  with  the  backing  of  unlimited 
capital,  is  even  now  engaged  in  what  is  considered  the  most  gigan- 
tic and  most  effective  work  of  reclamation  ever  attempted  in  Yolo 
county.  The  company  owns  and  controls  a  huge  body  of  land  ex- 
tending from  river  points  above  Washington  many  miles  below 
that  town  and  they  are  constructing  levees  with  concrete  bases, 
believing  that  it  will  prevent  seepage  and  thus  do  away  with  the 
necessity  of  pumping  that  water  out  of  the  district.  This  company 
has  also  acquired  rights  of  way  for  an  electric  line  to  traverse  Yolo 
county  from  Washington  to  its  western  boundary,  where  connections 
will  be  made  with  tide  water  transportation  lines. 


94  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER  XXI. 
WOODLAND 

The  pioneers  who,  by  accident  or  choice,  founded  the  town  of 
Woodland,  which  is  now  the  county-seat  of  Yolo  county,  either  exer- 
cised splendid  judgment  or  were  unusually  favored  by  chance.  Wood- 
land is  splendidly  situated,  both  as  regards  its  geographical  relation 
with  the  surrounding  country  and  its  sanitary  condition,  as  well  as 
its  picturesque  environment. 

The  city  has  been  built  in  about  the  center  of  the  county  on  the 
crest  of  a  gentle  knoll.  Just  a  short  time  ago  the  wisdom  of  its 
founders,  or  their  lucky  choice,  was  demonstrated  when,  after  some 
excessively  heavy  precipitations  of  rain,  the  city  was  entirely  sur- 
rounded by  water,  leaving  it  for  the  better  part  of  one  day,  an 
island.  The  waters  of  Cache  creek,  having  overflowed  its  banks, 
covered  the  territory  to  the  north  and  west  of  the  city.  Willow 
slough  contributed  enough  overflow  water  to  inundate  the  country 
lying  to  the  south  and  west  and  the  overflow  in  the  tule  filled  the 
basin  to  the  east  of  the  city. 

Its  topographical  situation  affords  splendid  drainage  and  is  in 
a  great  measure  responsible  for  the  splendid  sanitary  condition 
which  lias  always  prevailed  here.  There  have  been  very  few  epi- 
demics of  any  kind  in  the  city  during  its  existence  and  it  is  regarded 
as  a  very  healthful  place  of  abode. 

About  the  time  Jonas  Spect  founded  the  settlement  of  Fre- 
mont the  site  now  occupied  by  the  city  of  Woodland  was  a  beautiful 
grove  of  wide-spreading,  majestic  oaks,  rather  thickly  interspersed 
with  underbrush  peculiar  to  the  climatic  and  soil  conditions.  Elk, 
deer,  antelope,  coyotes,  panthers  and  other  beasts  of  the  fields 
and  woods  were  plentiful,  as  were  also  rabbits,  quail,  doves  and 
other  smaller  members  of  the  animal  kingdom. 

The  old  records  tell  us  that  the  late  Henry  Wyckoff  was  the 
founder  of  Woodland.  At  least  it  appears  that  he  was  the  first  man 
to  invade  the  fastness  for  the  purpose  of  establishing  a  place  of 
abode.  In  the  winter  of  1853  Mr.  Wyckoff  erected  a  small  box 
frame  building  where  now  is  Court  street  in  the  city  of  Wood- 
land and  opened  therein  a  store  and  thus  was  born  Yolo  City,  a 
name  which  was  soon  afterward  changed  for  the  more  euphonious 
title  of  Woodland. 

A.  Weaver  was  probably  the  second  man  to  establish  a  busi- 
ness in  Woodland.  Soon  after  Mr.  Wyckoff  opened  his  store  he 
started  a  blacksmith  shop  in  the  immediate  vicinity,  but  about  three 
months  afterward  either  sold  or  gave  it  to  James  McClure.     The 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  95 

latter  afterward  disposed  of  it  to  E.  R.  Moses,  who  conducted  the 
business  for  several  years. 

What  prompted  these  men  to  invade  the  wilderness  and  estab- 
lish places  of  business  has  not  been  clearly  set  forth  by  the  earlier 
historians,  but  from  other  things  they  wrote  it  appears  that  in  the 
meantime  the  interior  of  the  county  had  been  settled  and  inhabited 
by  men  engaged  in  the  cattle  business  and  no  doubt  in  their  migra- 
tions to  and  from  the  town  of  Washington  (the  then  county-seat, 
where  necessity  compelled  them  to  transact  most,  if  not  all,  of  their 
business)  they  had  beaten  a  trail  through  the  grove  which  after- 
ward became  Woodland.  Exercising  the  same  sagacious  foresight 
which  actuated  them  in  choosing  a  most  favored  site  for  other 
purposes,  they  perhaps  saw  the  possibilities  of  the  new  town  as  a 
business  center  and  future  developments  proved  their  wisdom,  for 
the  growth  of  Woodland  was  rapid. 

In  1856  Clark  Elliott  established  a  carriage  factory  in  Wood- 
land and  ten  years  later  improved  the  business  by  the  erection  of  a 
substantial  brick  structure.  The  factory  was  located  about  four 
hundred  feet  north  of  what  is  now  Main  street,  near  the  old  rail- 
road, which,  as  will  be  remembered  by  many  of  the  older  inhabi- 
tants, intersected  the  town  in  about  its  center,  crossing  Main 
street  at  or  near  the  corner  where  now  stands  the  Byrns  hotel. 

In  the  meantime,  or  to  be  more  exact,  in  1856,  Mr.  Wyckoff 
erected  a  larger  building  about  one  hundred  feet  east  of  where 
now  stands  the  Main  street  school  house  and  into  the  more  preten- 
tious building  moved  his  stock  of  merchandise.  He  sold  his  business 
to  P.  S.  Freeman  in  April,  1857,  and  moved  out  into  the  country 
a  few  miles  east,  where  he  engaged  in  farming  and  established  an 
elegant  home.  Mr.  Freeman  replaced  the  old  buildings  with  a 
larger  structure  which  he  occupied  as  his  residence  for  a  number  of 
years  and  which  was  afterward  occupied  many  years  for  the  same 
purpose  by  Mr.  Chandler. 

Mr.  Freeman  erected  a  third  building  in. 1861  on  the  northwest 
corner  of  what  is  now  Main  and  First  streets.  This  edifice  was  a 
substantial  structure  of  brick  and  a  very  commodious  building.  It 
was  occupied  by  Mr.  Freeman  as  a  general  merchandise  store  until 
sold  by  him  to  A.  Nickleshurg  &  Brother,  who  also  occupied  it  many 
years.  It  has  been  occupied  ever  since  for  business  purposes  by 
various  men  and  firms  and  is  today  still  the  scene  of  business  activ- 
ity, its  present  occupant  being  R.  B.  Cranston,  one  of  the  prominent 
hardware  merchants  of  the  city. 

Hyman  &  Brother  erected  a  store  on  Main  street  tlie  same 
year  and  Benjamin  Hotchkiss  opened  a  saloon,  the  first  in  the  city, 
on  the  same  thoroughfare.  Whether  by  accident  or  design  it  does 
not  appear,  but  in  after  years  the  Good  Templars  hall  was  erected 
on  Main  street  directly  opposite  the  first  saloon.    It  may  also  lie 


96  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

pertinent  to  state  in  passing  that  the  first  homicide  in  the  city 
took  place  in  this  saloon,  when  W.  C.  Harbin  killed  Francis  Wright 
on  May  25,  1861. 

Among  the  other  pioneer  business  men  of  the  city  were  Samuel 
McDonald,  who  opened  a  shoe  and  harness  repair  shop  on  Main 
street;  James  W.  Stotenberg  and  E.  Dollarhide,  who  established 
boarding  houses,  and  James  Asberry,  who  opened  a  meat  market 
opposite  the  site  of  the  future  Exchange  Hotel. 

The  refining  influences  of  education  and  religion  had  also  made 
their  appearance  in  Woodland.  The  afterward  widely  known 
Hesperian  College  was  finished  in  1860.  It  was  located  on  what 
is  now  Bush  street  and  for  many  years  was  the  principal  seat  of 
learning  not  only  in  Yolo  county  but  throughout  the  northern  part 
of  the  state.  After  the  establishment  of  the  high  school  in  Wood- 
land it  was  abandoned  and  eventually  the  building  was  torn  down  to 
make  room  for  the  splendid  new  armory  of  Company  F,  National 
Guard  of  California.  A  church  had  also  been  erected  on  the  same 
premises  and  a  district  school  house  was  built  near  the  spot  where 
afterward  was  erected  the  railroad  depot. 

NAMING  THE   TOWN 

The  naming  of  the  town  came  authoritatively  with  the  establish- 
ment of  its  postoffice  in  1859.  The  settlement  having  become  a 
place  of  recognized  importance,  Mr.  Freeman  circulated  a  petition 
among  its  inhabitants  asking  the  federal  government  to  establish  a 
postoffice  at  "Woodland,"  Cal.  This  is  the  first  time  in  the  records 
that  the  present  name  of  the  city  appears.  The  name  was  suggested 
by  Mr.  Freeman's  wife  and  a  more  appropriate  one  could  not  have 
been  chosen.  The  postoffice  department  in  due  time  granted  the 
petition  and  Mr.  Freeman  was  named  as  the  first  postmaster. 

There  appears  in  this  connection  the  first  evidence  of  sectional 
dissention  in  Woodland.  Willard  Johnson,  perhaps  because  he 
coveted  the  emoluments  and  prestige  which  are  bestowed  with  the 
title  of  "nasby,"  also  circulated  a  petition  for  a  postoffice  in  the 
town  to  be  called  "Yolo  Center,"  with  himself  as  postmaster,  and 
the  department,  through  ignorance  of  the  situation  no  doubt, 
acceded  to  his  desires,  with  the  result  that  there  were  two  post- 
offices,  with  as  many  names  in  the  new  settlement.  This  very 
naturally  led  to  complications  and  corresponding  confusion  and 
eventually  to  disaster  so  far  as  Mr.  Johnson's  ambitions  were  con- 
cerned, for  soon  afterward  the  department  revoked  the  order  and 
"Yolo  Center"  died  an  official  death  along  with  the  "nasby"  in- 
clinations of  Mr.  Johnson.  Since  that  time  the  name  of  "Wood- 
land" has  remained  the  recognized  title  of  this  fair  city. 


HISTORY  OF   YOLO   COUNTY  97 


THE   FIRST   INHABITANTS 

Having  briefly  outlined  the  business  growth  of  the  town  it 
may  be  interesting  also  to  give  a  list  of  the  first  inhabitants  of  the 
city  and  its  environs.  These  names,  while  not  having  appeared  in 
the  foregoing  business  recapitulation,  are  nevertheless  prominently 
identified  with  the  history  of  Woodland  and  Yolo  county,  for  it 
was  their  steadfastness  of  purpose,  their  integrity  and  sound  judg- 
ment, which  contributed  in  a  large  measure  to  the  growth  and  de- 
velopment of  the  community. 

Among  those  who  resided  in  the  town  just  before  the  advent 
of  the  railroad  and  the  acquisition  of  the  county  seat  were  F.  S. 
Freeman,  Rev.  J.  N.  Pendegast,  Rev.  Joshua  Lawson,  R.  G.  Lawson, 
J.  D.  Lawson,  Prof.  A.  L.  Mathews,  C.  S.  Frost,  J.  W.  Stotenberg, 
Benjamin  Hotchkiss,  Henry  Bates,  E.  G.  Hall,  J.  W.  Tilley,  William 
Skinner,  W.  S.  Emery,  E.  Dollarhide,  and  McElhaney. 

Those  who  lived  outside  of  the  village  but  in  close  proximity 
were  Thomas  Marston,  Jason  Watkins,  C.  Nelson,  Charles  Coil, 
Daniel  High,  F.  C.  Ruggles,  R.  L.  Beamer,  James  Morris,  Dr.  H. 
M.  Fiske,  David  Cole,  William  Gibson,  William  Fowler,  J.  M. 
Clanton,  Walter  Hulin,  Russell  Day,  Col.  Charles  W.  Lewis, 
Nicholas  Wyckoff,  Daniel  Fisher,  Judge  J.  J.  Deming,  T.  J.  Dexter, 
Joseph  Woigamott,  S.  P.  Pond,  J.  S.  Cook,  Thomas  Baird,  G.  D. 
Fiske,  J.  Hollingsworth,  J.  I.  S.  Wyckoff,  Samuel  Shyrock  and  B. 
F.  Hawley. 

THE    SOLE    SURVIVOR 

Of  all  these  names  there  appears  only  one  on  the  present  roll 
of  membership  of  the  city  of  Woodland.  It  is  that  of  J.  D.  Lawson, 
who,  though  well  along  in  years,  is  still  actively  engaged  in  busi- 
ness, being  associated  with  his  son,  R.  G.  Lawson,  in  one  of  the 
leading  real  estate  and  insurance  offices  in  this  city.  He  has  had  an 
active  business  and  political  career  in  Woodland  and  Yolo  county 
and  his  name  has  been  prominently  associated  with  the  history  of 
both  commonwealths. 


98  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

CHAPTER  XXII 

WOODLAND   BECOMES  THE   COUNTY   SEAT 

During  the  few  years  of  the  existence  of  Woodland  great 
changes  had  been  'wrought  in  the  interior  of  the  county.  Immi- 
grants had  found  that  there  were  fortunes  to  be  made  in  pursuits 
other  than  mining  and  cattle  raising.  The  wonderful  fertility  of 
the  soil  of  Yolo  county,  together  with  the  advantages  of  its  mild 
climate  and  its  long  summers,  had  opened  tbe  eyes  of  the  inhabi- 
tants, many  of  whom  had  followed  farming  as  a  livelihood  before 
leaving  their  eastern  homes.  As  a  result  these  hardy  pioneers 
began  breaking  the  virgin  soil  and  planting  crops.  Their  suc- 
cess attracted  others  and  about  the  time  of  the  closing  of  the 
preceding  chapter  the  country  in  the  vicinity  of  Woodland  had 
developed  into  quite  an  important  agricultural  center  and  was 
perhaps  the  most  thickly  populated  portion  of  the  county. 

Woodland  at  that  time  also  enjoyed  the  trade  of  all  that  por- 
tion of  the  county  lying  to  the  north  and  west,  because  of  its  closer 
proximity.  People  therefore  very  naturally  began  questioning 
the  wisdom  of  having  the  seat  of  government  at  Washington, 
situated,  as  it  was,  in  an  isolated  position  in  the  extreme  south- 
eastern corner  of  the  county,  and  added  to  that  the  flood  of  1861-2 
demonstrated  more  thoroughly  the  necessity  of  a  more  accessible 
point  for  the  seat  of  justice  and  the  transaction  of  the  county's 
business. 

The  question  of  moving  the  county  seat  to  Woodland  was 
therefore  agitated  upon  logical  and  economical  grounds  for  argu- 
ment and  resulted,  quite  naturally,  in  the  passage  of  a  bill  by  the 
legislature,  authorizing  a  vote  in  Yolo  county  as  to  whether  the 
county  seat  should  remain  at  Washington  or  be  moved  to  Wood- 
land. The  people  decided  in  favor  of  the  latter  town,  although 
the  vote  on  the  proposition  was  not  by  any  means  overwhelming. 
The  old  records  show  the  vote  to  have  been  as  follows:  Wood- 
land 968,  Washington  778. 

The  records  also  show  that  the  people  of  Washington  were 
loath  to  relinquish  the  prestige  and  advantages  derived  from 
having  the  seat  of  government  in  their  town.  They  contested  the 
election  before  the  board  of  supervisors,  but  there  appearing  no 
good  grounds  for  the  contest  the  county  legislators  refused  to  set 
aside  the  will  of  the  majority  of  the  people  of  the  county,  as 
expressed  at  the  polls,  and  decided  in  favor  of  the  contestees  and  so 
it  came  to  pass  that  the  records  of  the  county  were  removed  to 
Woodland  on  May  10,  1862,  and  Woodland  became  in  fact  the 
county  seat  of  Yolo  county  and  has  ever  since  retained  that  proud 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  99 

distinction.  The  first  courthouse  in  Woodland  was  the  small  frame 
building  on  First  street,  afterward  occupied  by  Otto  Schluer  as 
the  Woodland  bakery  and  which  is  still  standing. 

AN    ERA    OF    PROSPERITY 

With  the  acquisition  of  the  county  seat  and  substantial  evi- 
dence of  the  advent  of  the  railroad  (the  grading  of  the  old  Yallejo 
Railroad  having  been  completed  as  far  as  Woodland)  the  town 
entered  upon  an  era  of  business  and  social  activity.  Buildings 
were  erected  rapidly,  business  developed  and  new  people  sought 
a  home  in  the  thriving  new  town.  Among  the  first  to  engage  in 
business  after  the  acquisition  of  the  county  seat  was  J.  D.  Lawson, 
who  opened  the  first  livery  stable  on  the  southeast  corner  of 
Main  and  Second  streets  in  1862.  L.  Dietz  started  a  harness  shop 
in  the  fall  of  the  same  year.  Dr.  J.  L.  Downing  established  the  first 
drug  store  in  Woodland.  E.  H.  Baker  built  and  managed  its  first 
hotel,  the  building  being  located  near  the  northeast  corner  of 
Main  and  Second  streets.  This  building  was  subsequently  de- 
stroyed by  fire  and  the  same  fate  befell  the  building  which  was 
erected  upon  the  site  of  the  older  one.  In  November  of  the  same 
year  a  steam  flour  mill  was  erected  in  Woodland  and  about  the 
same  time  the  bridge  across  Cache  creek,  some  five  miles  to  the 
north,  was  completed. 

F.  S.  Freeman,  who  seems  to  have  taken  a  prominent  part  in 
all  movements  of  advancement  in  Woodland,  recorded  the  first  plat 
of  the  town  on  June  25,  1863.  Up  to  this  time  there  had  been  but 
one  street  in  the  village,  that  ujjon  which  nearly  all  the  business 
of  the  town  was  transacted  and  which  constituted  the  dividing  line 
between  the  property  patented  by  F.  S.  Freeman  in  1862  and  that 
patented  by  T.  M.  Harris  in  June,  1863.  Mr.  Freeman's  plat  di- 
vided the  northern  portion  of  what  is  now  Woodland  into  blocks, 
lots  and  streets,  and  following  that  there  was  some  system  as  to 
the  location  of  buildings.  In  after  years  additional  plats  were 
recorded  as  the  town  grew  in  population  and  its  limits  were  ex- 
tended. These  plats  were  recorded  by  men  who  happened  to  own 
adjacent  property  and  resulted  in  somewhat  irregular  streets 
with  jogs  and  turns.  The  city  has  been  to  considerable  expense 
in  late  years  condemning  private  property  for  the  purpose  of 
straightening  these  streets  and  opening  new  ones  so  that  there 
might  be  a  continuity  of  its  principal  thoroughfares,  and  even 
yet  there  are  a  few  such  streets  which  need  remodeling. 

On  September  19,  1863,  the  cornerstone  of  the  present  court- 
house was  laid  under  the  auspices  of  the  Grand  Lodge  of  Masons, 
Hon.  I.  Davis  presiding  during  the  impressive  ceremonies.  Only 
about  six  years  elapsed  before  it  was  found  inadequate  for  the 
purposes  for  which  it  was  designed  and  the  board  of  supervisors 


100  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

let  a  contract  to  Turton  &  Knox,  of  Sacramento,  to  raise  the 
building  eight  and  one-half  feet  and  put  under  it  a  new  and  more 
substantial  foundation.     This  work  was  completed  in  1870. 

The  year  1863  witnessed,  among  other  things,  the  organization 
of  Woodland's  first  brass  band,  John  E.  Taylor  being  the  first  who 
sought  to  appease  the  savage  breast  with  the  charm  of  Orpheus. 
This  pioneer  musical  organization  was,  however,  short  lived,  for  it 
happened  that  the  following  year  proved  to  be  one  of  disaster. 
It  is  remembered  and  talked  about  to  this  day  as  the  "dry  year 
of  1864."  As  most  of  the  business  of  the  community  was  de- 
pendent directly  and  indirectly  upon  the  success  of  the  farmers, 
the  scarcity  of  rainfall  that  year  resulted  in  short  crops  and  a 
corresponding  depression  in  all  branches  of  life.  Under  the  cir- 
cumstances the  people  thought  it  expedient  to  dispense  with  the 
luxury  of  music  and  the  members  of  the  band,  becoming  dis- 
couraged, scattered  and  the  band  was  no  more. 

It  was  not  until  1872  that  another  effort  was  made  in  Wood- 
land to  start  a  band.  In  that  year  A.  Dinzler  organized  one  with 
eight  members,  this  lasting  nearly  a  year.  In  1873  L.  Ellis  came, 
by  invitation  from  Auburn,  to  organize  and  instruct  a  band  and 
successfully  maintained  the  organization  under  the  name  of  "The 
Ellis  Brass  Band"  for  a  number  of  years. 

THE    FIRST    NEWSPAPER 

The  first  newspaper  published  in  Woodland  made  its  initial 
appearance  on  June  11,  1864,  under  the  name  of  the  Woodland 
News.  This  paper  had  previously  been  published  in  Knights 
Landing  under  the  name  of  the  Knights  Landing  News,  and  in 
Cacheville  under  the  title  of  the  Yolo  Democrat,  the  first  issue  of 
which  came  off  the  press  in  the  spring  of  1857.  At  that  time 
William  L.  Jernagan  and  Everts  were  the  proprietors  and  pub- 
lishers and  for  a  while  Samuel  Ruland,  of  Woodland,  was  the 
editor.  This  paper  was  published  about  one  year.  It  eventually 
became  the  property  of  M.  P.  Ferguson,  who  revived  the  publica- 
tion in  1858  under  the  name  of  the  Cacheville  Spectator,  but  after 
a  few  months  of  such  trials  and  tribulations  as  must  have  attended 
his  efforts  to  maintain  a  small  paper  in  a  sparsely  populated  com- 
munity, he  relinquished  the  title  and  management  of  the  sheet  to 
T.  J.  Howard,  who  formed  a  company,  moved  the  plant  to  Knights 
Landing  and  published  just  one  issue  of  the  Knights  Landing 
News.  About  two  months  later  S.  W.  Ravely  acquired  the  property 
and  revived  the  enterprise  at  the  scene  of  its  untimely  demise, 
under  its  old  name.  The  first  issue  of  the  revived  publication 
appeared  under  date  of  November  5,  1859.  He  continued  the  pub- 
lication of  the  paper  at  Knights  Landing  until  June,   1864,  when 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  101 

the  plant  was  removed  to  "Woodland,  where  the  name  was  changed 
to  the  Woodland  News,  as  has  heen  previously  mentioned. 

In  August,  1865,  H.  C.  Grover  and  Charles  E.  St.  Louis  pur- 
chased the  paper  and  changed  its  political  complexion.  Up  to  that 
time  the  paper  had  always  been  Democratic  in  its  party  affiliation, 
but  under  the  new  proprietorship  it  became  an  advocate  of  the 
principles  of  Republicanism.  A.  A.  DeLong  was  employed  as 
editor  and  retained  that  post  until  November  16,  1867,  when  the 
property  was  purchased  by  the  Democrat  Publishing  Company  and 
the  name  Woodland  News  was  abandoned.  On  the  23d  of  the  same 
month  the  old  name  of  the  Yolo  Democrat  was  again  assumed 
with  W.  A.  Henry,  afterward  police  judge  of  Sacramento,  as  editor. 
It  continued  under  his  management  and  direction  until  May  1, 
1869,  when  S.  P.  Hall  assumed  the  editorial  duties  and  responsi- 
bilities. His  reign  lasted  until  he  got  the  sheet  involved  in  a  libel 
suit  with  the  Yolo  Mail,  a  paper  which  had  been  started  in  the 
meantime,  when  he  lost  his  job. 

William  Saunders  and  H.  C.  Grover  purchased  the  interests 
of  the  company  which  consisted  of  Judge  M.  C.  Woods,  John  M. 
Kelly  and  H.  C.  Grover  and  the  last  issue  of  the  old  paper  under 
the  old  management  was  dated  October  2,  1869.  William  Saunders 
soon  afterward  acquired  the  interests  of  his  partner  and  became 
the  sole  proprietor  of  the  paper.  Under  his  management  the  paper 
was  enlarged  and  on  June  1,  1877,  he  commenced  the  publication 
of  a  daily  under  the  name  of  the  Woodland  Daily  Democrat,  at  the 
same  time  enlarging  the  weekly  from  twenty-eight  to  fifty-six 
columns. 

The  successive  owners  of  the  Democrat  have  been  Ruffner 
&  Lee,  Wick  B.  Parsons,  Lee  &  Maxwell,  and  the  present  owner 
Ed  E.  Leake,  a  newspaper  man  of  wide  .experience  and  extraor- 
dinary ability.  Mr.  Leake  has  recently  enlarged  the  paper  to 
eight  pages  of  five  columns  each  and  has  added  new  departments. 
He  is  ably  assisted  by  his  two  sons,  Ed  I.  Leake  and  Paul  Leake. 
Politically  the  paper  is,  as  it  has  nearly  always  been,  Democratic. 
The  able  editor  has  always  been  able  to  see  enough  virtue  in  the 
platforms  of  that  party,  as  enunciated  at  the  National  conventions, 
to  remain  conscientiously  a  strong  advocate  of  its  principles  and 
he  has  a  strong  following  not  only  in  the  city  of  Woodland,  but 
throughout  the  county,  where  his  paper  has  a  large  subscription. 


102  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER  XXIII 
OTHER  EARLY   ENTERPRISES 

[To  get  back  to  contemporaneous  matters.  Right  here  the 
author  wishes  to  explain  that  so  far  as  business  enterprises  are 
concerned  only  very  brief  mention  is  to  be  made  in  this  particular 
department,  because  C.  W.  Bush,  president  and  manager  of  the 
Bank  of  Yolo,  and  a  man  long  and  prominently  associated  with 
the  commercial  interests  of  the  city,  has  contributed  to  the  work  a 
very  interesting  chapter  on  the  subject.] 

The  Bank  of  Woodland,  the  first  enterprise  of  its  kind  to  be 
established  in  Woodland,  was  incorporated  in  1868  and  exists  to 
this  day,  a  financial  power  in  the  county.  On  October  19th  of  the 
same  year  Woodland  was  connected  with  the  outside  world  by 
telegraph  wires  and  the  early  historian  tells  us  *that  ' '  twenty-one 
messages  were  flashed  over  the  wires  the  first  day."  In  1869 
the  firm  of  Sibley  &  Winne  started  the  first  planing  mill  in  Wood- 
land and  the  same  year  the  California  Pacific  Railroad  Company 
finished  its  railroad  through  Woodland  and  as  far  north  as  Knights 
Landing. 

TOWN    INCORPORATED 

The  town  began  to  take  on  city  airs  and  its  inhabitants  thought 
it  about  time  that  some  system  of  government,  other  than  that 
exercised  by  the  board  of  supervisors,  be  established.  Accordingly, 
on  August  4,  1869,  a  petition,  numerously  signed,  was  presented 
to  the  board  of  supervisors  asking  that  the  town  of  Woodland 
be  incorporated  as  provided  by  law,  but  Giles  E.  Sill  appeared 
with  objections  and  the  matter  was  passed  by  the  board  until 
September.  On  the  first  day  of  that  month  the  matter  of  incor- 
poration was  pressed  again,  but  action  was  indefinitely  postponed, 
it  having  been  discovered  that  thirty-four  names  on  the  petition 
were  not  those  of  bona  fide  citizens  of  the  town,  which  left  the 
remaining  signatures  less  than  a  required  majority  of  the  residents. 
It  was  not  until  February  22,  1871,  that  the  matter  was  brought 
up  again  before  the  supervisors  by  petition  headed  by  A.  C.  Rug- 
gles,  R.  L.  Beamer,  J.  W.  Kelly  and  C.  P.  Sprague,  containing  in 
the  aggregate  about  two  hundred  signatures  of  the  residents  of 
the  town  and  vicinity. 

But  again  there  appeared  opposition.  John  Hollingsworth 
and  Joseph  Wolgamott  objected  so  strenuously  to  the  petition  that 
a  compromise  was  finally  effected  by  changing  the  boundaries 
of  the  city  so  that  their  respective  properties  were  not  included 
in  the  city  limits.    At  the  same  time  the  petition  was  amended  to 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  103 

include  the  holdings  of  R.  H.  Beamer  and  F.  M.  Brown,  those  gen- 
tlemen expressing  a  desire  to  be  included  in  the  city.  With  these 
changes  the  board  of  supervisors  passed  the  necessary  resolution 
of  incorporation,  ordering  the  election  for  Tuesday,  March  14, 
1871,  the  polling  place  to  be  at  the  office  of  Elias  Petterson,  a 
justice  of  the  peace,  and  naming  the  officers  of  election  as  follows : 
Elias  Petterson,  inspector;  E.  Bynum  and  George  D.  Fiske,  judges. 
At  this  election  there  were  five  trustees,  a  treasurer,  assessor  and 
marshal  elected  as  follows :  D.  C.  Hubbard,  president ;  E.  Giddings, 
clerk ;  E.  R.  Lowe,  G.  Kauffman  and  John  Schuerly,  trustees ;  J.  D. 
Lawson,  marshal;  G.  W.  Greene,  treasurer;  and  P.  C.  Robertson, 
assessor. 

OTHER    EAELY    NEWSPAPERS 

It  appears  that  the  early  political  complexion  of  Yolo  county 
was  decidedly  Democratic;  in  fact,  it  remained  so  until  late  years. 
This  was  perhaps  because  most  of  the  pioneer  settlers  of  Yolo 
county  came  from  Missouri,  which  state  at  that  time  was  swarming 
with  Democrats.  At  any  rate,  up  to  the  time  of  the  brief  owner- 
ship of  the  Woodland  News  by  Messrs.  Grover  and  St.  Louis, 
very  little  of  the  principles  of  Republicanism  had  been  advocated 
in  Yolo  county  and  men  of  that  political  faith  were  scarce.  With 
the  increased  population  of  the  city,  however,  there  appears  to 
have  been  a  considerable  reinforcement  of  the  rank  and  file  of  the 
Republican  party  and  about  the  time  Mr.  Henry  took  over  the 
Woodland  News  the  Republicans  of  the  town  began  to  feel  the 
necessity  of  a  party  organ.  Some  of  the  leading  Republicans  of 
the  town  interested  themselves  in  the  matter  and  finally  induced 
C.  Y.  Hammond,  a  man  with  previous  editorial  experience,  to  start 
a  Republican  paper  in  the  town.  The  first  issue  of  the  newspaper, 
under  the  name  of  the  Yolo  Weekly  Mail,  made  its  appearance 
on  the  first  Thursday  of  October,  1868. 

0.  E.  Wagstaff  and  S.  A.  Jones,  succeeded  Mr.  Hammond  as 
proprietor  of  the  Mail,  taking  over  the  property  on  December 
25,  1869.  The  former  of  these  gentlemen  became  the  sole  pro- 
prietor of  the  paper  on  May  23,  1870,  and  retained  possession  until 
June  22,  1872,  when  R.  D.  Hopkins  became  a  part  owner.  The 
latter  sold  his  interests  to  Henry  Sharp  on  October  30,  1873. 
Messrs.  Wagstaff  and  Sharp  remained  proprietors  until  February 
20,  1879,  when  they  sold  to  W.  W.  Theobalds. 

During  the  campaign  of  1879  a  strictly  party  campaign  paper 
was  issued  from  the  Mail  office  under  the  title  The  Daily  Repub- 
lican. It  was  edited  by  A.  A.  DeLong,  an  ardent  and  enthusiastic 
Republican,  and  with  the  close  of  the  campaign,  ceased  to  exist. 

Allan  T.  Bird  succeeded  Mr.  Theobalds  as  editor  and  pub- 
lisher of  the  Mail,  he  taking  over  the  paper  in   the   early    '80s. 


104  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

His  successor  was  Ralph  Ellis,  who  was  in  turn  succeeded  by 
his  son,  W.  F.  Ellis,  who  is  now  secretary  of  the  State  Highway 
Commission.  J.  H.  Dungan  purchased  the  paper  from  the  latter 
and  after  several  years  of  ownership  sold  a  half  interest  to  his 
brother-in-law,  W.  T.  Mixon  of  St.  Helena,  who  is  now  the  sole 
proprietor.  During  the  management  of  the  latter  the  paper  has 
been  enlarged  to  a  four-page,  seven-column  sheet  and  a  semi-weekly 
paper  is  also  issued  from  the  office. 

The  paper  lias  remained  true  to  the  principles  of  the  Repub- 
lican party  on  national  issues,  although  the  present  efficient  and 
able  editor  has  shown  an  independent  spirit  on  matters  of  local 
interest.  Mr.  Mixon  has  stood  for  local  reforms  and  has  wielded 
a  big  influence  in  shaping  the  destinies  of  the  community. 

A  newspaper  called  the  Woodland  Standard  was  published 
in  Woodland  for  a  period  of  seven  months  under  the  editorship  of 
D.  H.  Hackett,  its  first  issue  appearing  in  March,  1879,  and  its 
final  issue  January  10,  1880.  This  paper  was  bought  at  a  sheriff's 
sale  in  December,  1878,  in  Winters,  where  it  had  been  published 
under  the  name  of  the  Winters  Advocate,  by  L.  Walker,  who 
was  then  postmaster  of  Woodland.  Mr.  Hackett  obtained  posses- 
sion of  the  paper  through  a  lease  from  Mr.  Walker. 

WOODLAND    FIRE    DEPARTMENT 

On  the  30th  of  August,  1870,  the  Woodland  Hook  and  Ladder 
Company,  No.  1,  was  organized.  Monroe  Snyder  was  elected  fore- 
man and  William  Thompson,  secretary.  The  trucks  and  other 
paraphernalia  were  made  by  Henry  Perry,  who  then  had  a  wagon 
and  carriage  factory  in  Woodland.  The  entire  expense  of  appa- 
ratus was  borne  by  the  members  of  the  company. 

The  first  record  of  municipal  ownership  or  direction  of  the 
fire  department  appears  about  March  5,  1875,  when,  under  au- 
thority of  the  trustees  of  Woodland,  Woodland  Engine  Company 
No.  1  was  organized  with  W.  F.  Moses,  president;  J.  D.  Lawson, 
vice-president;  Martin  Steinmitz,  foreman;  Otto  Schluer,  first 
assistant;  C.  Barr,  second  assistant;  R.  H.  Beamer,  secretary; 
and  D.  M.  Burns,  treasurer.  This  company  was  equipped  with 
a  second-grade  Clapp  &  Jones  fire  engine,  which  the  city  pur- 
chased on  May  4,  1876,  at  a  cost  of  $5,000,  two  hose  carts,  about 
1,000  feet  of  hose  and  the  old  single  truck  of  the  original  company. 
The  company  exists  today  and  is  splendidly  equipped  with  up- 
to-date  apparatus. 

PIONEER    FRATERNAL    BODIES 

The  first  fraternal  lodge  organized  in  Woodland  was  Wood- 
land Lodge  No.  156,  P.  &  A.  M.,  which  organization  was  effected 
August  16,  1862.  For  a  number  of  years  the  members  of  this 
lodge    met    in    the    second    storv    of    a    building    situated    in    the 


HISTOEY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  105 

northern  part  of  town,  the  lower  story  of  which  was  used  as  a 
school  room  in  the  day  time.  About  1894  the  Masonic  lodge 
joined  with  the  Farmers  &  Merchants  Bank  in  the  erection  of  the 
very  handsome  stone  and  brick  building  at  the  corner  of  Main 
and  First  streets,  which  is  now  the  home  of  the  lodge,  it  owning 
the  entire  third  floor  which  is  used  exclusively  by  the  various 
branches  of  the  Masonic  fraternity. 

The  nest  oldest  lodge  in  Woodland  is  Woodland  Lodge  No. 
Ill,  I.  O.  0.  F.,  which  was  instituted  January  17,  1863,  with  five 
charter  members.  This  lodge  owned  the  third  floor  of  the  building- 
occupied  by  the  Bank  of  Woodland  for  many  years  and  held  its 
meetings  there  until  a  few  years  ago.  The  members  sold  their 
property  to  the  bank  and  erected  a  handsome  three-story  brick 
building  of  the  old  mission  style  of  architecture  at  the  corner 
of  Third  and  Main  streets,  which  is  now  the  home  of  the  lodge,  the 
members  numbering  in  the  neighborhood  of  230. 

Pythia  Lodge  No.  43,  K.  of  P.,  was  organized  May  3,  1877, 
with  twenty-six  charter  members.  The  lodge  is  still  actively 
engaged  in  the  work  of  fraternity. 

In  the  fall  of  1854  there  was  instituted  in  Woodland  a  divi- 
sion of  the  order  known  as  the  Sons  of  Temperance  in  a  school 
house  close  to  and  just  north  of  where  Woodland  now  stands. 
It  was  a  contemporaneous  movement  with  that  of  the  organization 
of  the  Christian  church  and  considerable  feeling  was  aroused 
among  the  people  because  of  the  stand  taken  by  the  denomination 
against  the  temperance  order,  because  of  its  being  a  secret  order. 
However,  it  appears  that  the  order  withstood  the  antagonism  and 
it  spread  rapidly  throughout  the  county.  The  division  erected 
an  addition  to  the  school  house  near  Woodland,  to  enable  them 
to  hold  their  meetings,  and  two  years  afterward  they  were  joined 
by  the  Masons  and  put  a  second  story  on  the  new  school  house 
erected  that  year.  In  this  they  held  their  meetings  until  the 
division  was  disbanded,  it  eventually  being  absorbed  by  the 
newer  order  of  the  same  faith,  the  Good  Templars. 

Sixteen  men  of  Woodland  constituted  the  charter  member- 
ship of  Yolo  Lodge  No.  22,  Ancient  Order  of  Chosen  Friends, 
which  for  a  number  of  years  was  one  of  the  prominent  fraternal 
societies  of  the  city.  The  members  held  their  meetings  in  the 
Odd  Fellows'  hall  and  2>rospered  until  the  grand  lodge  became 
involved  in  financial  troubles,  which  eventually  culminated  with 
the  dissolution  of  the  local  branch. 

Woodland  Lodge  No.  237,  Independent  Order  of  Good  Tem- 
plars, was  organized  under  the  most  favorable  auspices,  there 
being  ninety-three  charter  member  when  the  lodge  was  instituted 
on  October  13,  1866.  This  number  was  soon  swelled  to  119 
and  the  lodge  erected  a  building,  afterward  called  Good  Templars' 


106  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

hall,  at  a  cost  of  $4,000,  but  to  accomplish  that  end  contracted 
debts  which  proved  too  much  for  the  organization,  with  the  result 
that  they  finally  lost  their  property  and  the  lodge  passed  into 
oblivion.  The  building  they  constructed,  however,  was  used  for 
years  afterward  as  a  place  of  amusement  for  the  people  of  the 
town  and  it  became  a  landmark. 

The  order,  however,  of  which  Woodland  lodge  was  a  branch, 
did  not  expire  in  Yolo  county  with  the  demise  of  its  offspring  and 
in  1878,  on  the  20th  of  March,  another  lodge  of  the  same  order, 
called  Chrysopolis  Lodge  No.  210,  was  organized.  This  lodge  con- 
tinued in  existence,  meeting  in  the  Odd  Fellows'  hall,  until  the 
later  and  more  effective  temperance  organization  known  as  the 
Woman's  Christian  Temperance  Union  took  up  the  work  they 
had  prosecuted,  and  the  older  organization  gave  way  to  the  new. 

The  German  population  in  Woodland  vicinity,  following  the 
example  set  by  their  countrymen  all  over  the  United  States,  on 
February  8,  1871,  organized  a  Turn  Verein  Society  and  erected 
a  hall  building  south  of  and  facing  the  courthouse.  This  building 
afterward  became  the  armory  of  Company  F,  N.  G.  C. 

COMPANY  F,  NATIONAL  GUARD  OF   CALIFORNIA 

One  of  the  important  organizations  of  the  city  is  Company  F 
of  the  Second  Regiment  of  Infantry,  N.  G.  C.  Not  so  much  because 
of  its  protection  to  the  people  of  the  city  is  this  organization 
recognized  as  one  of  the  substantial  bodies  of  Woodland,  but  be- 
cause it  brings  revenue  into  the  city,  being  supported  wholly  by 
the  state,  and  because  during  all  the  years  of  its  existence  it  has 
helped  in  various  entertainments  and  lent  pomp  and  splendor 
to  such  parades  as  have  been  held  from  time  to  time. 

Company  F  was  organized  in  March,  1881,  by  some  of  the 
leading  business  men  of  the  city.  Its  ranks  were  recruited  with 
the  substantial  men  of  the  community,  including  merchants,  law- 
yers, doctors  and  men  of  other  professions  and  vocations.  The 
first  meetings  were  held  in  old  Washington  hall,  which  was  after- 
ward destroyed  by  fire,  and  C.  M.  Cassler  was  elected  the  first 
captain,  with  G.  W.  Myrick  and  Dave  Tobias  as  his  first  and 
second  officers,  respectively.  The  company  was  then  a  part  of  the 
First  Artillery  Regiment  of  the  state  militia. 

After  the  destruction  of  Washington  hall  by  fire  the  company 
moved  its  effects  into  the  old  Turner  hall  opposite  the  present  hall 
of  records,  which  also  suffered  destruction  by  fire,  but  not  until 
the  company  had  again  moved  into  the  building  now  known  as 
the  Old  Armory,  which  was  built  for  the  now  defunct  Olympic 
Club.  In  the  meantime  the  company  had  been  changed  from  an 
artillery  organization  into  a  company  of  infantry  and  new  uniforms 
and  equipment  were  issued. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  107 

W.  T.  Spencer  was  elected  captain  in  1883  and  served  two 
years.  He  was  succeeded  by  Captain  Cassler,  who  was  again 
elected  commander  in  1885.  After  one  year  of  service  Major  W.  H. 
Curson  was  elected  to  the  captaincy  and  served  for  nine  years 
continuously.  It  was  under  his  command  that  the  company  found 
such  comfortable  and  commodious  quarters  in  the  old  Armory 
building.     That  occurred  in  the  year  1888. 

Robert  Warren,  a  lieutenant  under  Curson,  was  elected  captain 
and  after  one  year  was  succeeded  by  his  first  lieutenant,  H.  U. 
Prindle.  Under  the  reign  of  the  latter  the  company  was  called 
to  Dunsmuir  during  the  memorable  railroad  strike  of  1894.  Cap- 
tain Prindle  was  also  instrumental  in  securing  the  construction  of 
the  elegant  new  armory  hall  built  expressly  for  the  company 
by  local  capitalists  in  the  early  '90s. 

J.  J.  Ward  was  elected  to  succeed  Prindle  and  was  commanding 
the  company  when  the  call  came  for  volunteers  in  the  Spanish- 
American  war.  Company  F  was  recruited  up  to  full  fighting 
strength  and  the  volunteers  in  due  time  went  to  Oakland,  where 
because  of  trouble  over  the  commander  of  the  company,  the  au- 
thorities seeking  to  displace  Ward  and  put  Barnes  in  command 
of  the  organization,  a  big  majority  of  the  members  refused  to  be 
mustered  in  and  the  company  was  disbanded  by  the  state  authori- 
ties. 

Woodland  was  without  a  military  organization  until  1898, 
when  some  prominent  men  of  business  interested  themselves  in 
the  matter  and  under  Governor  Gage  obtained  permission  for 
the  organization  of  another  company  in  Woodland,  to  be  known 
under  the  old  title.  W.  H.  Curson,  who  after  his  retirement  as 
commander  of  the  company  had  been  elected  major  of  the  Second 
Battalion  of  the  Second  Infantry  regiment,  was  again  prevailed 
upon  to  accept  the  captaincy  of  the  local  organization  and  it  was 
due  principally  to  his  untiring  efforts  that  the  present  company 
was  recruited. 

The  commanders  since  Major  Curson 's  second  term  have  been 
Majors  J.  C.  Lee  and  C.  W.  Thomas  and  Captain  C.  B.  Nichols. 
The  company  is  now  in  a  flourishing  condition  and  is  recognized 
throughout  the  state  as  one  of  the  most  efficient  military  organi- 
zations connected  with  the  National  Guard. 


108  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER  XXIV 
A  PERIOD  OF  DEPRESSION 

Like  many  other  cities,  Woodland  has  passed  safely  through 
the  ordeal  of  business  stagnation  and  the  consequent  depression  of 
its  inhabitants.  Following  the  close  of  the  preceding  chapter  there 
occurred  an  epoch  in  the  history  of  this  fair  city  which  greatly 
discouraged  those  whose  optimistic  predictions  had  painted  the 
glory  of  the  county  seat  in  glowing  colors.  The  hard  times  were 
due  as  much  to  local  conditions  as  they  were  to  circumstances 
which  prevailed  throughout  the  commonwealth  and  which  were 
felt  here.  With  the  exception  of  a  few  venturesome  enterprises 
by  local  men  the  history  of  Woodland  from  1880  to  1890  could  well 
be  put  into  a  small  chapter  of  lamentations.  These  few  enterprises 
were  inaugurated  mostly  by  Woodland  men  who  had  much  money 
invested  here  and  who  apparently  sought  to  stimulate  the  confi- 
dence of  the  people  by  putting  more  of  their  wealth  into  local 
enterprises.  They  perhaps  also  knew  that  the  inactivity  was  only 
temporary  and  that  in  the  end  things  would  assume  their  normal 
condition.  That  after  all  they  acted  wisely  is  clearly  demonstrated 
by  subsequent  events. 

The  author  is  not  going  to  attempt  to  describe  the  conditions 
which  prevailed  during  this  period  of  depression  more  than  to 
give  a  few  circumstances  illustrative  of  the  times.  For  instance, 
an  owner  of  local  property  offered  to  give  away  some  city  lots 
he  possessed  to  rid  himself  of  the  burden  of  taxes  he  was  com- 
pelled to  pay  upon  them.  Fortunately  for  him  he  could  find  no 
takers.  Clerks  in  some  of  the  local  stores  were  put  upon  a 
percentage  basis  of  sales  for  compensation.  The  author,  then 
a  scribe  on  a  local  paper,  well  remembers  the  temerity  of  a  local 
woman  who,  with  a  few  thousand  dollars,  decided  to  build  a  new 
home  in  Woodland.  The  news  was  then  considered  of  so  much 
importance  that  the  reporter  devoted  nearly  a  column  in  the 
paper  to  a  description  of  the  new  house.  If  reporters  at  the  pres- 
ent time  attempted  to  do  the  same  thing  their  employers  would 
necessarily  have  to  issue  supplements  of  many  pages  every  day. 

woodland's   first   and   only   street   car 

Among  the  few  enterprises  which  served  to  relieve  the  mon- 
otony of  this  period  of  depression  was  the  financing  of  the  build- 
ing of  Woodland's  first  and  only  street  railway  by  some  local 
men  of  means.  The  car  line  extended  from  the  western  limits 
of  the  city  to  the  Southern  Pacific  depot  near  the  eastern  corpora- 
tion  line,   a   distance   of  about   a    mile.      The   motive   power   was 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  109 

horse  flesh   and   two   cars   were   purchased    and   operated.      It    is 
hardly  necessary  to  add  that  the  enterprise  met  an  untimely  demise. 

COMING  OF   THE   TELEPHONE  AND  ELECTRICITY 

Enterprises  which  met  a  better  fate  were  the  installation  of 
a  local  telephone  system  and  the  construction  of  an  electric 
lighting  plant  by  the  same  company  which  had  previously  built 
and  operated  the  gas  plant.  The  local  telephone  company  main- 
tained an  office  on  Main  street  and  had  an  exchange  of  a  few  tele- 
phones in  the  city.  This  business,  of  course,  gradually  developed, 
as  the  need  of  quicker  communication  made  itself  felt,  and  after 
a  few  years  of  successful  operation  the  local  company  disposed 
of  their  interests  to  a  state  corporation,  which  was  in  turn  absorbed 
by  the  Pacific  Telephone  and  Telegraph  Company,  which  now  has 
a  very  large  system  in  Woodland  and  even  in  some  parts  of  the 
surrounding  country.  There  is  also  a  local  company  operating 
a  rural  system  under  the  name  of  the  Farmers'  Telephone  Com- 
pany and  the  whole  county  is  now  connected  by  the  telephone 
wires. 

The  present  very  comprehensive  and  effective  electric  light 
and  power  system,  now  operated  by  the  Pacific  Gas  and  Electric 
Company,  was  originally  inaugurated  by  local  capitalists  during 
this  period  of  hard  times.  A  plant  was  installed  on  Fifth  street 
in  Woodland  and  the  town  was  wired  for  electricity  as  the  con- 
sumers entered  into  contracts  with  the  company.  The  power  was 
generated  in  the  plant  with  machinery  operated  by  steam.  In  due 
course  of  events  the  Bay  Counties  Light  and  Power  Company, 
which  had  entered  the  field  of  northern  California,  negotiated  the 
purchase  of  the  local  plant  and  with  the  water  power  furnished 
by  their  big  plant  at  Colgate,  proceeded  immediately  to  furnish  the 
local  consumers  with  light  and  power  at  a  much  cheaper  rate  than 
they  had  been  paying.  Local  enterprises  which  used  power  of  any 
description  began  equipping  their  plants  with  electric  motors  and 
today  the  lines  of  the  big  corporation  are  extended  even  into  the 
country  where  farmers  are  pumping  water  and  operating  farm 
machinery  with  electric  power.  The  Bay  Counties  Power  Company 
was  within  the  past  few  years  absorbed  by  the  more  powerful 
and  extensive  Pacific  Gas  and  Electric  Power  Company. 

THE    WOODLAND    CREAMERY 

An  enterprise  which  did  more,  perhaps,  than  any  other  to 
stem  Woodland  through  the  hard  times  was  the  Woodland  Cream- 
ery, also  built  by  local  men  who  felt  the  necessity  of  a  local  market 
for  their  dairy  products,  the  people  in  the  vicinity  having  in  the 
meantime  engaged  extensively  in  the  business  of  dairying.  The 
local  creamery  at  once  became  a  paying  investment,  because  of  the 
superiority   of   the   butter   manufactured,    which    to    this    day    has 


110  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

maintained  its  reputation  throughout  the  state.  Woodland  cream- 
ery butter  is  quoted  nearly  everywhere  about  five  cents  above  the 
prevailing  market  prices  for  other  butter  and  the  demand  through 
all  these  years  has  steadily  increased.  This  enterprise,  successful 
from  the  start,  has  been  a  steady  and  consistent  means  of  bringing 
revenue  into  the  city  and  it  proved  a  boon  to  investors  and  patrons 
alike  when  all  business  enterprises  were  hardly  paying  interest 
on  the  investment.  The  local  plant  has  been  enlarged  and  improved 
from  time  to  time  and  is  now  one  of  the  best  equipped  institu- 
tions of  its  kind  in  this  part  of  the  state. 

During  these  years  the  city  trustees  were  experiencing  great 
difficulty  in  straightening  the  streets  of  the  city.  A  perusal  of 
their  minutes  shows  contract  after  contract  for  grading  streets 
and  many  transactions  in  which  the  city  acquired  title  to  property 
for  the  purpose  of  widening  and  straightening  its  thoroughfares. 

The  first  lighting  of  the  city  followed  a  minute  of  the  board  of 
Trustees  of  April,  1877,  in  which  it  was  provided  that  five  gas 
jets  be  installed  for  street  lighting,  one  each  at  the  corner  of 
Main  and  First,  Main  and  Second,  Main  and  Third,  Main  and 
Fifth,  and  Main  and  Railroad.  At  the  same  meeting  the  trustees 
ordered  the  installation  of  three  fire  plugs. 

The  first  official  grade  for  streets  and  sidewalks  was  fixed  by 
the  city  trustees  in  April,  1878,  and  provided  that  "the  official  base 
for  elevations  for  all  streets  shall  be  plane  100  feet  below  the 
top  of  the  iron  bench  mark  near  the  northeast  corner  of  Byrns 
and  Dietz  block  at  the  southwest  corner  of  Main  and  Second 
streets." 

In  1881  the  trustees  passed  the  first  ordinance  fixing  the  fire 
limits  of  Woodland  and  providing  for  the  class  of  building  that 
might  be  constructed  within  those  limits. 

The  board  entered  into  a  contract  with  R.  II.  Beamer  in  1883 
in  which  the  latter  agreed  to  build  a  building  for  municipal  pur- 
poses over  the  blacksmith  shop  formerly  occupied  by  B.  Ready, 
the  second  floor  of  which  should  be  devoted  exclusively  to  the 
use  of  the  city,  the  ground  floor  for  the  fire  department  and  a 
jail  should  be  provided  in  the  rear.  This  building  was  the  official 
home  of  the  city  for  a  great  many  years.  It  is  now  occupied  by 
professional  men  as  offices. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  111 

CHAPTER  XXV 

A  PERIOD   OF  DISASTER 

An  organization  known  as  the  Woodland  Business  Men's 
Association  was  effected  in  May,  1889,  for  the  purpose  of  pro- 
tecting the  local  merchants  and  fostering  home  industries.  This 
organization  gave  way  in  after  years  to  the  Woodland  Chamber 
of  Commerce.  The  latter  body,  however,  did  not  fully  take  the 
place  of  the  original  organization  and  in  May,  1909,  the  mer- 
chants feeling  again  the  need  of  such  an  organization,  formed 
the  Merchants'  Association  of  Woodland. 

In  January,  1890,  there  occurred  the  most  severe  storm  the 
people  had  experienced  for  many  years.  Rain  fell  in  torrents  and 
was  accompanied  by  high  winds.  That  section  of  the  county 
bordering  on  the  Sacramento  river  was  flooded,  with  much  conse- 
quent damage  to  growing  crops  and  improvements,  and  the  same 
conditions  existed  along  the  banks  of  Cache  creek,  where  im- 
provements of  thirty  years  standing  and  accumulation  were  swept 
away.  It  was  impossible  to  get  any  sort  of  an  estimate  of  the 
damage  wrought,  as  measured  in  dollars  and  cents. 

THE    FIRST    FAIR 

Another  industrial  organization  which  gained  considerable 
reputation  throughout  the  northern  part  of  the  state,  the  Yolo 
Agricultural  Fair  Association,  was  organized  in  1891  with  the 
following  directors :  Hon.  L.  B.  Adams,  president ;  M.  Diggs, 
Charles  R.  Hoppin,  W.  B.  Gibson,  G.  W.  Woodard,  S.  T.  Mowder, 
Dr.  Thomas  Ross,  C.  F.  Thomas  and  J.  H.  Doolittle.  The  first 
fair  held  under  their  direction  was  in  September,  1891,  beginning 
on  the  first  day  thereof,  and  it  was  a  big  success. 

Beginning  August  29,  1893,  another  county  fair  was  held  in 
Woodland.  The  state  had  in  the  meantime  been  districted  by  the 
state  legislature,  which  body  evinced  a  keen  interest  in  these 
affairs  and  lent  them  both  moral  and  financial  support.  Yolo 
county  was  designated  as  the  Fortieth  District.  District  fairs  and 
race  meetings  have  been  held  from  time  to  time  in  Yolo  county 
ever  since.  In  late  years  the  Pacific  Horse  Breeders'  Association 
has  aided  materially  in  giving  these  fairs. 

TOWN   IS   BONDED 

In   September,    1891,    a   bond    election   was    held  and    carried 

for  a  municipal  building,  purchase  of  the  water  works  (then  owned 

by   a   private    corporation)    and    for    the    installation  of    a    sewer 

system   in  Woodland.     The  vote   was   quite   decided  in   favor   of 


112  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

bonding,  the  various  majorities  being  respectively,  340  for  the 
building,  370  for  the  sewer  and  374  for  the  purchase  of  the  water 
works. 

The  site  for  the  city  hall  or  municipal  building,  corner  of 
First  and  Court  streets,  was  selected  in  October,  1891,  and  con- 
struction was  commenced  soon  after.  The  building  has  been  the 
source  of  considerable  trouble  and  expense  since.  According  to 
the  testimony  of  experts  it  appears  that  those  who  planned  the 
building  made  the  mistake  of  putting  on  a  roof  too  heavy  for  the 
supporting  walls.  The  building  was  pretty  badly  wrecked  in  the 
earthquakes  of  1892  and  was  afterward  condemned  as  being  unsafe 
for  occupancy.  The  city  offices  moved  out  and  found  office  quar- 
ters in  buildings  uptown.  However,  some  repairs  have  been  made 
on  the  building  since  and  it  is  still  occupied  by  the  fire  department 
on  the  ground  floor  and  by  the  city  recorder. 

The  city  also  experienced  much  trouble  on  account  of  the 
sewer,  which  was  put  in  soon  after  the  election.  The  city  trustees 
leased  a  quarter-section  of  land  about  one  and  one-half  miles  east 
of  the  city  limits  for  a  dumping  place  for  the  sewer  and  in  due 
time  the  land  owners  in  the  vicinity  brought  suit  against  the  city 
to  abandon  the  place  on  the  ground  that  it  was  a  public  nuisance. 
The  suit  was  successful  and  the  city  was  compelled  to  '  lease 
ground  some  two  miles  farther  east  and  extend  the  sewer  to 
the  new  point.  The  sewage  is  now  covered  in  the  rainy  season 
by  overflow  water  and  washed  away. 

The  year  1891  saw  also  the  establishment  just  north  of  Wood- 
land of  its  first  and  only  woolen  mill.  The  mill  was  destroyed 
by  fire  on  January  29,  1896,  and  its  proprietors,  Messrs.  Shapherd 
and  Collum,  were  arrested  and  tried  for  arson,  it  being  charged 
that  they  purposely  fired  the  mill  to  obtain  the  iusurance  they  car- 
ried on  it.  Mr.  Collum  was  convicted.  Perhaps  the  fate  of  the 
first  venture  has  deterred  any  from  attempting  to  start  another 
such  mill  in  the  community. 

Despite  the  severe  earthquake  shocks  in  the  spring  of  1892 
and  the  very  disastrous  conflagration  in  July  of  the  same  year, 
there  was  unusual  activity  in  business  circles  in  that  year.  Among 
other  things  there  was  an  unusual  shipment  of  products  from 
Woodland  to  the  outside  markets.  An  organization  called  the 
Woodland  Fair  Association  was  organized  for  the  purpose  of 
preparing  and  maintaining  an  exhibit  of  the  products  of  Yolo 
county  at  the  Chicago  Columbian  Fxposition.  The  cornerstone  of 
the  city  hall  was  laid  on  August  6th,  and  the  building  cost  the 
city  $24,000.  A  contract  was  let  for  the  construction  of  the  Farm- 
ers &  Merchants  Bank  at  a  cost  of  $29,908.  Extensive  improve- 
ments were  made  in  the  Bank  of  Yolo.  The  construction  of  the 
sewer  system  was  completed   on   October   1st.     The  new   German 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  113 

Lutheran  Church  on  Cleveland  street  was  dedicated  November 
13th.  Articles  of  incorporation  of  the  Yolo  County  W.  C.  T.  U. 
were  filed  with  the  county  clerk.  On  July  12th  the  deal  for  the 
purchase  of  the  water  works  by  the  city  was  consummated,  the 
consideration  being  $25,000.  That  was  one  of  the  wisest  things 
the  people  of  the  city  ever  did,  for  this  has  been  a  source  of  income 
ever  since.  The  works  have  been  operated  at  a  profit  and  the 
residents  of  the  city  have  benefited  materially  in  a  reduction  of 
tax  rates.  On  December  13th  the  Woodland  high  school  was 
located  in  Woodland. 

EARTHQUAKE     AND     FIEE 

The  year  1892  was  also  one  of  disaster.  Yolo  and  Solano 
counties  seem  to  have  been  directly  in  the  path  of  the  severe  earth- 
quake which  occurred  on  the  morning  of  April  19,  1892,  and  both 
were  shaken  from  center  to  circumference,  although  so  far  as 
damage  was  concerned  Solano  county  suffered  the  most.  In 
Woodland,  people  who  occupied  large  residences  were  badly  fright- 
ened, in  one  or  two  instances  the  fright  amounting  almost  to 
panic.  The  shock  was  felt  here  about  3  o'clock  in  the  morning. 
Nearly  every  building  in  town  showed  some  evidence  of  a  severe 
wrenching,  although  the  damage  was,  comparatively  speaking, 
slight.  Three  days  later  another  shake  was  felt  in  Woodland,  this 
also  being  quite  severe,  but  fortunately  the  damage  done  amounted 
to  little. 

The  most  disastrous  conflagration  in  its  history  occurred  in 
Woodland  on  July  1,  1892,  when  two  business  blocks  and  one  block 
of  residences  were  destroyed  by  fire.  The  fire  originated  in  the 
alley  back  of  Main  street,  between  First  and  Second  streets.  There 
was  quite  a  heavy  wind  from  the  north  and  the  flames  were  car- 
ried to,  and  soon  communicated  with,  the  business  block  on  the 
north  side  of  Main  street.  Among  other  buildings  destroyed  in 
this  fire  were  the  opera  house  and  the  Flxchange  hotel.  Sparks 
were  carried  over  intervening  blocks,  setting  fire  to  and  destroying 
a  block  of  residences  on  South  Third  street  between  Lincoln 
avenue  and  Oak  street.  Business  was  suspended  during  the  fire, 
which  lasted  the  better  part  of  the  day,  and  every  one  able  to  do 
so  responded  to  the  call  for  help.  Telegrams  were  sent  to  Sacra- 
mento and  that  city  sent  an  engine  and  part  of  its  department 
to  the  relief  of  her  sister  city.  The  trip  over  was  made  on  a  flatcar 
furnished  by  the  Southern  Pacific  Companv  in  about  twenty  min- 
utes, which  was  some  thirty  minutes  under  the  regular  schedule  of 
the  company.  The  loss  to  property  was  estimated  at  $200,000,  and 
the  loss  of  life  was  confined  to  one  brave  member  of  the  local  fire 
department,  W.  W.  Porter,  who  was  killed  at  his  post  of  duty 


114  HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

in  the  alley  back  of  the  opera  house,  by  the  falling  of  the  rear 
wall  of  the  building. 

During  the  years  1894,  1895  and  1896  there  was  a  marked 
depression  in  business  and  social  life  felt  throughout  the  country 
and  of  course  Woodland  was  affected  with  the  other  cities  of  the 
state.  Very  little  in  the  way  of  public  improvement  was  done, 
the  people  settling  down  to  a  struggle  to  provide  the  common 
necessities  of  life.  Added  to  this  the  murder  of  Constable  L. 
Todhunter  by  outlaws  in  March,  1893,  cast  an  additional  gloom 
upon  the  people  and  in  January,  1895,  the  country  was  visited  by 
another  of  those  rarely  severe  storms.  As  a  result  there  were 
very  few  new  business  enterprises  inaugurated  in  Woodland  and 
about  the  only  thing  along  these  lines  was  the  consummation  of 
plans  previously  arranged.  The  Woodland  Building  and  Loan 
Association  was  organized  in  1893  and  the  Farmers  &  Merchants 
Bank,  now  the  First  National  Bank,  opened  for  business  January 
2,  1894.  B.  B.  Blowers,  a  pioneer  of  1854  and  one  of  the  fore- 
most fruit  growers  of  the  community,  died  on  May  11,  1894,  and  in 
the  same  year  the  great  railroad  strike  which  culminated  in  death 
and  disaster  to  Yolo  county  began. 

FAMOUS    WOEDEN    CASE 

No  doubt  the  famous  Worden  murder  trial  is  still  fresh  in 
the  memories  of  Woodland  people.  Worden  headed  a  gang  of 
railroad  strikers  who  wrecked  a  special  train  at  a  small  trestle 
about  two  miles  north  of  Sacramento,  killing  the  engineer,  Sam 
Clark,  and  several  militiamen.  Worden  with  some  of  the  other 
members  of  the  party,  Melvin  Hatch,  Harry  Knox,  and  Tex 
Appleman,  were  arrested  on  the  charge  of  murder  and  tried  in 
Woodland.  Eminent  attorneys  were  employed  and  the  trial  was 
one  of  the  sensational  affairs  of  the  day.  All  the  men  except 
Worden  escaped  punishment,  they  being  acquitted.  Worden  was 
convicted  and  sentenced  to  be  hanged,  but  President  Cleveland 
commuted  his  sentence  to  life  imprisonment  and  only  a  few  years 
ago  Worden  was  pardoned  by  the  Board  of  Prison  Commissioners 
and  is  now  sojourning  with  a  brother  in  Japan. 

WINE     INDUSTEY 

About  the  only  business  which  did  not  suffer  materially 
during  these  few  years  of  depression  was  that  of  wine  making. 
During  the  early  years  of  the  wine  industry  people  who  cultivated 
grapes  prospered.  In  Woodland  this  industry  prospered  in  1895, 
the  output  of  the  local  winery  being  for  the  year  about  150,000 
gallons.  About  this  time  there  first  appeared  the  agitation  about 
the  sugar  beet  industry  and  the  people  of  Yolo  county  were  made 
various  propositions  in  which  it  was  promised  that  in  the  event 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  115 

of  setting  aside  a  certain  number  of  acres  to  the  growing  of  sugar 
beets  a  factory  would  be  built  here.  The  enterprise,  however,  was 
new  and  although  the  matter  was  urged  again  in  after  years,  the 
solicitors  were  unable  to  secure  enough  acreage  to  justify  the 
necessary  expenditure  for  a  factory  and  the  matter  was  finally 
dropped,  the  factory  being  located  elsewhere.  There  is  now  a  large 
acreage  of  beets  planted  in  Yolo  county  in  the  vicinity  of  Woodland 
and  the  growers  are  compelled  to  ship  their  product  to  the  factory. 

On  March  1,  2  and  3  of  1896  the  people  of  Yolo  county  were 
treated  to  the  unusual  spectacle  of  seeing  the  foothills  of  the 
county  covered  with  snow.  On  January  15  of  this  year  the  new 
opera  house  was  opened.  It  was  built  upon  the  site  of  the  old 
one  and  was  financed  with  local  capital.  The  W.  C.  T.  U.  began 
the  agitation  of  prohibition  and  a  vote  was  taken  in  Woodland 
on  the  saloon  question,  but  for  all  data  regarding  the  movement 
of  prohibition  in  Woodland,  the  author  respectfully  refers  the 
reader  to  an  article  in  this  work  written  by  Mrs.  S.  A.  Huston, 
which  will  be  found  comprehensive  and  accurate. 

The  Woodland  Athletic  Club  was  organized  April  22,  1897, 
with  the  following  directors :  A.  M.  Britt,  J.  C.  Crutcher,  F.  Wood- 
man, Dr.  Stevenson,  W.  L.  Wood,  W.  J.  Parker,  T.  G.  Hughes, 
D.  C.  Halsey,  J.  J.  Ward,  E.  E.  Gaddis  and  J.  H.  Dungan. 
Quarters  were  leased  in  the  old  Y.  M.  C.  A.  building  on  Second 
street  and  a  splendid  equipment  of  paraphernalia  was  purchased. 
The  club  thrived  for  a  while,  but  its  members  soon  tired  of  the 
amusement  and  the  paraphernalia  was  afterward  sold  to  Com- 
pany F  of  the  N.  G.  C. 

The  business  of  grape  growing  had  grown  to  such  propor- 
tions in  the  vicinity  of  Woodland  that  men  engaged  in  the  industry 
began  looking  about  for  better  facilities  for  marketing  their  crops. 
As  a  result  of  this  agitation  a  company  was  formed  for  the  pur- 
pose of  establishing  a  raisin  seeding  plant  in  Woodland,  which 
was  completed  in  September,  1899.  A  few  years  after  Guggenheim 
&  Co.,  of  San  Francisco,  took  over  this  plant  and  enlarged  the 
fruit-packing  establishment  until  it  is  one  of  the  largest  and  best 
equipped  in  this  part  of  the  state. 

In  January,  1901,  a  bill  was  introduced  in  the  state  legislature 
providing  for  the  amendment  of  the  charter  of  the  city.  The  bill 
became  a  law  in  March  of  the  same  year  and  brought  about  con- 
solidation of  certain  city  offices.  The  offices  of  city  attorney 
and  city  clerk  were  consolidated.  The  city  treasurer  was  made  the 
tax  collector.  The  city  marshal  was  made  license  collector  and 
superintendent  of  streets,  and  other  changes  of  minor  importance 
were  made. 

The  Woodland  Chamber  of  Commerce,  mention  of  which  lias 
been  previously  made,  was  organized  February  1,   1900,   and  ten 


116  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

days  afterward  the  first  farmers'  institute  was  held  iu  Woodland. 
These  institutes  were  held  at  Woodland  each  year  until  the  state 
farm  was  established  near  Davisville.  As  the  latter  answered 
the  same  purpose  for  which  the  institutes  were  held,  it  resulted  in 
the  abandonment  of  the  annual  meetings  of  instruction. 

In  1902  W.  W.  Percival  and  W.  P.  Craig  built  and  conducted 
the  Woodland  flour  mill.  The  building  was  erected  on  the  Gibson 
tract  one  mile  south  of  town.  A  little  more  than  one  year  after 
its  construction  the  mill  was  destroyed  by  fire.  Messrs.  Percival 
and  Craig  joined  a  company  of  San  Francisco  capitalists  in  the 
construction  of  a  new  and  modern  mill  in  the  city  of  Woodland,  but 
disposed  of  their  interests  to  their  partners,  who  were  in  turn 
absorbed  by  the  Globe  Milling  Company  of  California,  of  which 
company  the  local  mill  is  at  the  present  time  one  of  the  best  paying 
properties. 

One  of  the  most  important  business  transactions  of  the  county 
occurred  January  27,  1903,  when  Joe  Craig,  acting  for  the  Yolo 
County  Consolidated  Water  Company,  bought  the  interests  of  the 
heirs  of  the  Moore  estate  in  and  to  the  Moore  irrigating  system. 
This  transaction  also  ended  long  pending  litigation  between  the 
Moore  people  and  other  claimants  of  water  rights  from  Cache 
creek.  The  new  company  at  once  set  about  improving  and  enlarg- 
ing the  system  and  the  users  of  water  got  better  service  than  they 
had  received  for  some  time.  Since  the  acquisition  of  this  prop- 
erty, however,  by  the  Consolidated  Water  Company  the  area 
planted  to  alfalfa  has  so  multiplied  that  even  their  more  com- 
prehensive system  has  proved  inadequate  to  the  demand  upon  it 
for  water  and  there  has  been  considerable  complaint  and  a  few 
law  suits  arising  from  the  company's  refusal  or  neglect  to  fur- 
nish water  to  consumers. 

At  the  present  time  the  people  of  the  community  have  brighter 
prospects  ahead  of  them  for  irrigation  than  they  have  ever  had. 
In  June,  1912,  the  Yolo  Consolidated  Water  Company  sold  their 
interests  to  the  Yolo  Water  and  Power  Company,  a  syndicate  of 
New  York  capitalists,  which  promises  great  things  for  Yolo  county 
in  the  way  of  water  supply  and  the  development  of  electrical  power. 

The  new  owners  of  the  system  submitted  a  proposition  to  the 
people  which  in  substance  was  that  if  they  agreed  and  pledged 
themselves  to  purchase  water  rights  to  attach  to  their  holdings  at 
$20  per  acre,  the  company  would  furnish  water  thereafter  at  the 
rate  of  $1.50  per  acre  per  year,  providing  acreage  to  the  amount 
of  50,000  acres  was  pledged.  The  proposition  has  been  accepted 
and  the  required  acreage  has  been  signed  up.  The  company  is 
now  engaged  in  the  construction  of  a  concrete  dam  near  Capay, 
which  will  cost  when  completed  between  $40,000  and  $50,000. 
They  intend  also  to  build  restraining  dams  above  Rumsev  at  the 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  117 

head  of  Capay  valley  and  at  the  head  of  Cache  creek  on  Clear 
lake,  also  to  levee  Clear  lake  for  the  purpose  of  retaining  the 
winter  flood  water,  after  which  will  come  the  construction  of  a 
great  system  of  irrigation  which  will  cover  the  entire  county,  also 
the  construction  of  the  necessary  works  for  the  generation  of 
electric  power. 


CHAPTER  XXYI 

A    PERIOD    OP    MARKED    ACTIVITY 

Other  contemporaneous  business  activities  were  the  organiza- 
tion of  the  Yolo-Solano  Irrigation  Company,  the  former  for  the 
purpose  of  diverting  water  from  the  Sacramento  river  and  Central 
canal  in  March,  1902;  the  establishment  of  two  free  rural  mail 
delivery  routes  in  the  county  adjacent  to  Woodland ;  the  capture 
at  the  state  fair  of  the  first  premium  offered  for  the  best  display 
of  products  by  any  county  in  the  state  in  September,  1903;  the 
laying  of  the  cornerstone  of  the  new  Carnegie  library  at  the  corner 
of  First  and  Court  streets  on  June  7,  1904;  dedication  of  the  new 
Native  Sons'  hall  on  Main  street,  a  very  handsome  building 
erected  by  A.  D.  Porter;  laying  of  the  cornerstone  of  the  new  Odd 
Fellows'  building  at  the  corner  of  Third  and  Main  streets,  which 
occurred  April  28,  1905;  purchase  of  a  city  park,  the  property 
lying  between  Oak  and  Cross  streets  and  Cleveland  and  Walnut, 
at  a  cost  of  $2,265.  This  last  deal  was  consummated  in  May,  1905, 
at  a  time  when  property  in  Woodland  was  comparatively  cheap. 
That  block  of  ground  is  today  worth  many  times  the  price  paid 
for  it.  The  Ladies'  Improvement  Club  of  Woodland  was  largely 
responsible  for  the  acquisition  of  this  valuable  property.  The 
club  furnished  some  of  the  money  used  for  the  purchase  and  its 
members  started  and  maintained  the  agitation  which  eventually 
led  to  action  upon  the  part  of  the  city  officials.  The  park  has 
been  improved  by  the  planting  of  grass  and  trees  and  the  instal- 
lation of  swings  and  other  apparatus  suitable  for  a  place  of  that 
kind.  It  is  today  one  of  the  principal  places  of  amusement  in 
the  city. 

An  old  land-mark  of  the  city  was  wiped  out  when  the  old 
building  at  the  corner  of  Main  and  Sixth  streets  was  destroyed 
by  fire  in  the  summer  of  1905.  The  building  belonged  to  the 
Greiner  estate  and  was  the  second  school  house  built  in  Wood- 
land and  was  also  occupied  for  a  time  as  a  meeting  place  for  the 
Masons. 


118  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

The  death  of  W.  B.  Gibson,  one  of  the  pioneer  settlers  of 
Yolo  county,  in  February,  1905,  was  generally  mourned  and  his 
funeral  was  one  of  the  largest  ever  held  in  the  city. 

After  much  controversy  and  a  great  effort  upon  the  part  of 
some  of  the  most  prominent  people  of  the  city  and  surrounding 
country  Yolo  county  was  successful  in  its  efforts  to  locate  within 
its  boundaries  the  state  farm  situated  near  Davisville,  the  site 
for  which  was  selected  by  a  committee  representing  the  legis- 
lature April  6,  1906.  A  more  comprehensive  account  of  this  insti- 
tution may  be  found  in  that  department  of  this  work  devoted  to  the 
schools  of  Yolo  county. 

In  December  of  this  year  free  mail  delivery  was  established 
in  Woodland.  In  order  to  get  this  recognition  from  the  postoffice 
department  at  Washington  the  houses  of  Woodland  were  numbered 
systematically,  by  city  ordinance,  and  the  trustees  caused  about 
seventeen  miles  of  concrete  sidewalks  to  be  built  at  the  expense 
of  the  property  owners.  Mayor  R.  H.  Beamer-  took  an  active 
part  in  this  work  of  improvement  and  although  at  the  time  he 
was  censured  by  many  for  what  they  termed  unjust  burdens 
cast  upon  them,  his  name  is  today  connected  with  this  movement 
and  one  hears  only  words  of  praise  for  his  forethought  and  energy. 
It  is  said  that  Woodland  has  more  miles  of  cement  sidewalks  than 
any  other  city  of  like  population  in  the  state. 

The  very  handsome  new  home  of  the  Bank  of  Yolo  at  the 
corner  of  Main  and  College  streets  was  completed  in  July,  1907. 
This  is  said  to  be  one  of  the  finest  buildings  of  its  kind  in  the 
northern  part  of  the  state.  It  is  equipped  with  all  the  modern 
conveniences  and  appliances  for  comfort  and  is  handsomely  finished 
in  imported  Italian  marble. 

And  now  we  enter  upon  the  closing  chapter  of  the  history  of 
Woodland.  Although  it  covers  only  a  short  period  of  time  as 
measured  in  months  and  years,  so  much  has  been  crowded  into 
those  few  months  that  it  would  take  too  much  time  and  space  to 
attempt  any  sort  of  a  detailed  account.  In  the  last  few  years 
of  its  existence  Woodland  has  witnessed  and  enjoyed  a  prosperity 
which  exceeded  the  most  sanguine  expectations  of  those  who  had 
the  most  faith  in  its  future. 

Regarding  the  cause  of  this  unusual  activity  people  differ, 
but  the  author  is  inclined  to  the  belief  that  several  things  con- 
tributed to  the  cause.  Benefiting  by  the  advertising  of  the  enter- 
prising people  of  Southern  California,  Woodland  began  in  1910 
to  attract  eastern  homeseekers.  'Tis  true,  the  Woodland  chamber 
of  commerce  and  other  individuals  did  something  in  the  way  of 
advertising  to  attract  these  newcomers,  but  their  efforts  were  puny 
as  compared  to  the  energy  thrown  into  this  work  by  our  southern 
neighbors,  whose  efforts  brought  thousands  of  people  from  the  east 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  119 

to  find  homes  in  California.  Gradually  these  people  learned  that 
Los  Angeles  and  the  surrounding  country  was  not  all  of  this 
great  state.  They  began  to  hear  of  the  fertile  San  Joaquin  and 
Sacramento  valleys  and  simultaneously  they  began  to  investigate. 

At  first  it  was  an  occasional  visitor  who  dropped  in  on  us 
to  explore.  What  they  found  evidently  suited  them  for  the  tide 
of  immigration  into  Yolo  county  has  increased  steadily  ever  since, 
until  now  the  town  is  filled  with  new  people.  A  politician  who 
has  held  office  for  the  past  six  years  and  who  has  lived  in  Wood- 
land for  the  past  twenty-five  years,  remarked  recently  after  he 
had  been  introduced  to  several  persons  in  as  many  minutes: 
''Well,  I  thought  I  knew  every  man,  woman  and  child  in  this 
city,  but  I  see  very  clearly  that  if  I  want  to  run  for  office  any 
more  it  is  up  to  yours  truly  to  go  out  and  get  acquainted." 

Contemporaneously  with  this  movement  of  immigration  came 
first  rumors  of  an  electric  railroad  for  Woodland  and  afterward 
the  more  definite  news  of  the  application  by  the  Vallejo  Northern 
for  a  franchise  to  enter  the  city.  These  were  followed  by  even 
more  substantial  evidences  of  the  advent  of  the  electric  railroad  and 
this  no  doubt  added  impetus  to  the  business  activities  already  in 
evidence.  About  this  time  also  the  prohibition  movement  had 
gained  material  headway.  The  ranks  of  the  local  prohibitionists 
having  been  recruited  by  the  arrival  of  many  eastern  people  who 
believed  as  they  did,  that  party  presented  a  formidable  front  and 
a  real  fighting  strength,  as  was  proved  in  1911,  when  at  an  election 
held  for  the  purpose  of  deciding  whether  the  saloons  should 
remain  in  Woodland  or  be  closed,  the  "drys"  won  by  a  sub- 
stantial majority  and  Woodland  entered  the  ranks  of  the  prohibi- 
tion cities  in  California. 

There  are  those  in  Woodland  who  believe  that  the  closing  of 
saloons  contributed  more  than  anything  else  to  the  subsequent 
prosperity  which  came  to  the  city.  The  fact  remains,  no  mat 
ter  what  the  cause,  that  building  activities  in  Woodland  ex- 
ceeded anything  in  her  history.  It  is  estimated  that  about  200 
homes  have  been  built  in  Woodland  within  the  past  two  years, 
all  of  them  tasteful  and  of  a  substantial  character.  The  city  has 
been  compelled  to  sink  auxiliary  wells  to  supply  the  water  needs 
and  there  is  grave  danger  that  the  sewer  system  will  have  to  be 
enlarged, 

With  building  activities  in  the  residence  districts  of  the  city 
came  also  a  corresponding  movement  in  the  business  districts. 
The  handsome  Roth  building  on  Main  street  was  completed  and 
tenanted.  The  Physicians'  building  at  the  corner  of  First  and 
Main  streets  was  remodeled  and  beautified.  Extensive  improve- 
ments were  made  on  the  First  National  Bank  building.  The  new 
St.  Luke's  Episcopal  church  was   completed  in  1912   and   a   very 


120  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

handsome  stone  church  for  the  Roman  Catholics  is  under  con- 
struction. The  Southern  Pacific  Railroad  Company  has  given  to 
Woodland  the  long  promised  new  depot,  and  the  electric  railroad 
company  finished  its  very  handsome  depot  at  the  corner  of  Main 
and  Second  streets,  this  building  costing  about  $45,000.  The  new 
Woodland  Sanitarium,  a  splendid  and  very  handsome  building 
situated  on  the  corner  of  Third  and  Cross  streets,  was  completed  in 
December,  1911,  and  the  local  postoffice  was  made  a  savings  de- 
pository July  20,  1911.  The  Sacramento  to  Woodland  Electric 
railway  was  financed  (the  local  banks  taking  considerable  of  the 
bond  issue),  but  the  crowning  feature  of  all  these  activities  was 
the  opening  of  the  railroad  between  this  city  and  Sacramento  on 
July  4,  1912. 

The  people  celebrated  that  event  with  the  anniversary  of  the 
birth  of  independence.  A  large  assemblage  of  prominent  business 
men  of  Sacramento  came  to  Woodland  on  the  first  electric  train 
of  eight  cars,  which  brought  also  a  great  crowd  of  other  Sacra- 
mentans  and  the  day  was  spent  with  patriotic  ceremonies  and  the 
other  customary  features  of  a  Fourth  of  July  celebration.  All 
day  the  Sacramento  Woodland  Railway  ran  trains  to  and  from 
Woodland,  each  train  carrying  hundreds  of  people.  The  receipts 
of  the  railroad  company  far  exceeded  their  most  hopeful  expec- 
tations and  ever  since  the  business  of  the  new  road  has  been  most 
satisfactory. 

On  December  18,  1911,  a  vote  was  held  in  Woodland  school 
district  for  the  purpose  of  bonding  it  for  $90,000  to  build  a  new 
high  school  building.  The  people  voted  in  favor  of  the  bonding, 
the  vote  being  816  for  and  157  against  the  proposition.  The  new 
building  is  now  under  construction.  According  to  the  plans  and 
specifications  it  will  be  a  credit  to  the  community. 

Two  attempts  have  been  made  to  bond  the  county  for  the  pur- 
pose of  building  a  new  court  house,  but  both  failed.  The  first 
election  held  in  the  summer  of  1911  was  lost  by  a  very  small 
majority,  but  so  much  pressure  was  brought  to  bear  upon  the 
board  of  supervisors  that  they  agreed  to  submit  the  matter  again. 
There  sprang  up,  however,  an  organized  opposition  to  the  propo- 
sition and  instead  of  carrying  the  bonds  in  the  second  election 
held  in  December,  1911,  as  was  expected,  the  vote  was  decisively 
against  bonding,  the  majority  against  being  249. 

The  reason  for  such  a  strong  opposition  appears  to  have  been 
the  amount  asked  by  the  board  of  supervisors  for  the  purpose. 
A  great  many  people  entertained  the  idea  that  the  sum  was  ex- 
cessive  and  the  buildings  could  be  built  for  less.  All,  it  seems, 
are  satisfied  that  the  county  needs  a  new  court  house,  but  they 
have  been  unable  to  agree  as  to  the  details.  Perhaps  in  the  near 
future  the  proposition  will  come  up  again,  and  the  people  of  Wood- 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  121 

land,  especially,  hope  that  next  time  the  proposition  will  he  car- 
ried. 

Perhaps  it  is  had  taste  to  close  this  work  with  the  foregoing 
story  of  defeat,  but  the  people  have  settled  down  to  the  routine  of 
life,  happy  and  prosperous,  and  confident  that  a  great  future  is 
in  store  for  their  beautiful  and  thriving  little  city. 

This  hope  is  not  without  foundation,  for  Woodland  offers  to 
the  homeseeker  many  advantages  which  are  not  found  in  all 
cities.  It  is  essentially  a  city  of  homes,  fitted  by  nature  as  an  unusu- 
ally attractive  place  for  the  habitation  of  mankind.  While  there 
are  but  few  who  ever  expect  to  see  Woodland  become  a  great  city 
with  factories,  foundries  and  kindred  industries,  there  are  many 
who  confidently  look  forward  to  the  time  when  as  a  city  of  resi- 
dences it  will  have  few  competitors  in  this  glorious  state  of  ours. 
As  has  been  mentioned  in  the  first  part  of  this  article  nature  pro- 
vided a  site,  where  Woodland  stands,  unusually  favored  for  the 
purposes  to  which  our  forefathers  put  it.  Splendid  drainage, 
beautiful  environment,  fertile  soil,  an  unsurpassed  climate,  pure 
water  and  such  things  donated  by  nature,  added  to  which  there 
are  good  streets,  many  miles  of  concrete  sidewalks,  adequate 
systems  of  water  and  sewage,  a  good  fire  alarm  system,  splendid 
schools,  including  kindergarten,  primary,  grammar  and  high 
schools,  churches  of  nearly  every  denomination,  local  branches  of 
nearly  every  fraternal  order  under  the  sun,  a  splendid  free  library, 
free  mail  delivery,  literary  clubs,  musical  organizations,  four  thriv- 
ing banks,  business  houses  of  every  kind,  and  since  the  advent  of 
the  electric  road,  quick  and  cheap  transportation  to  the  larger 
centers  of  population  and  a  ready  and  cheap  means  of  transporta- 
tion of  local  products.  Woodland  has  also  a  good  theater  and 
the  usual  number  of  moving  picture  theaters,  besides  the  Oak- 
Club,  where  men  of  business  are  wont  to  congregate  to  amuse  them- 
selves and  talk  over  the  incidents  of  the  day  and  hour.  Do  you 
wonder,  good  reader,  that  the  local  residents  fondly  expect  to  see 
the  population  of  this  fair  city  more  than  doubled  within  the 
next  few  vears? 


122  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER  XXVII 

OFFICERS  OF  THE  CITY  OF  WOODLAND  AND  OF  THE  COUNTY 
AND  STATE 

Following  is  a  list  showing  the  results  of  all  the  elections 
held  in  Woodland  since  its  original  incorporation : 

March  14,  1871 — Board  of  Trustee:  D.  C.  Hubbard  (presi- 
dent), E.  Giddings  (Clerk),  E.  R.  Lowe,  G.  Kauffman,  John  Scku- 
erley.  J.  D.  Lawson,  city  marshal ;  G.  W.  Greene,  treasurer ;  P.  C. 
Robertson,  assessor. 

May  1,  1871 — Board  of  Trustees:     F.  S.  Freeman  (president), 

C.  L.  Simpson  (clerk),  J.  D.  Lawson,  C.  H.  Gray,  Donald  Frazer. 
R,  T.  Buckley,  marshal;  G.  W.  Greene,  treasurer;  0.  B.  Westcott, 
assessor. 

May  6.  1872 — Board  of  Trustees:  J.  D.  Lawson  (president), 
J.  K.  Smith  (clerk),  R.  H.  Newton,  C.  H.  Gray,  J.  H.  Arnold. 
M.  Snyder,  marshal;  G.  W.  Greene,  treasurer;  O.  B.  Westcott, 
assessor. 

May  5,  1873 — Board  of  Trustees:  A.  C.  Ruggles  (president), 
R.  H.  Newton  (clerk),  T.  0.  Pockman,  W.  W.  Brownell,  E.  Bynum. 
J.  B.  Strong,  marshal;  A.  G.  Read,  treasurer;  F.  M.  Brown, 
assessor;  James  Johnson,  attorney  (appointed). 

May   4,    1874 — Board    of    Trustees:      E.    Bynum    (president), 

D.  M.  Burns  (clerk),  W.  W.  Brownell,  R.  H.  Newton,  George 
Lewald.  John  Webber,  marshal ;  W.  W.  Brownell,  treasurer  ( ap- 
pointed). 

1876— Board  of  Trustees:  G.  W.  Hiatt  (president),  George  H. 
Jackson  (clerk),  James  Viers,  J.  R.  Edwards,  P.  Krellenberg. 
M.  W.  Thomas,  marshal;  P.  Krellenberg,  treasurer  (appointed). 

1878 — Board  of  Trustees:  James  Yiers  (president),  A.  Nick- 
elsberg  (clerk),  J.  M.  Rhodes,  Otto  Schluer,  Chris  Sieber.  George 
Alford,  marshal;  Chris  Sieber,  treasurer  (appointed). 

May  3,  1880 — Board  of  Trustees:  Donald  Frazer  (president), 
J.  M.  Rhodes  (clerk),  G.  H.  Jackson,  A.  J.  Hall,  G.  W.  Andrews. 
A.  S.  Armstrong,  marshal;  G.  W.  Andrews,  treasurer  (appointed). 

Mav  1,  1882 — Board  of  Trustees:  A.  Mossmaver  (president), 
W.  S.  Huston  (clerk),  F.  A.  Pedler,  L.  Charmak,  G.  H.  Jackson. 
L.  Charmak,  treasurer  (appointed) ;  H.  M.  Hoyt,  marshal. 

May  5,  1884 — Board  of  Trustees:  A.  Mossmaver  (president), 
W.  S.  Huston  (clerk),  L.  Charmak,  George  H.  Jackson,  A.  L.  Boggs. 
H.  M.  Hoyt,  marshal;  L.  Charmak,  treasurer. 

May  1,  1886— Board  of  Trustees:  G.  W.  Brown  (president), 
Charles  Gummow  (clerk),  L.  Charmak,  W.  F.  Mock.  H.  M.  Hoyt, 
marshal ;  C.  M.  Hiddleson,  treasurer. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  123 

May,  1888— Board  of  Trustees:  J.  0.  Maxwell  (mayor),  J.  K. 
Smith  (clerk),  R.  F.  Hester,  J.  H.  Wright.  L.  Charmak,  treasurer; 
Carey  Barney,  marshal. 

At  this  election  a  vote  for  reincorporation  was  lost  by  a  vote 
of  230  for  anbl  394  against. 

1890— Board  of  Trustees:  M.  Diggs  (president),  J.  G.  Crutcher, 
J.  F.  Duncan,  L.  Charmak,  J.  O.  Maxwell.     C.  M.  Barney,  marshal. 

At  this  junction  the  Board  of  Trustees  adopted  a  resolution 
submitting  again  to  the  people  the  proposition  of  reincorporation. 
The  city  was  divided  into  four  precincts  and  the  election  was  set 
for  June  16th.  On  that  day,  by  a  decisive  majority,  the  people 
voted  to  incorporate  into  a  city  of  the  fifth  class  and  elected 
officers  as  follows: — Board  of  Trustees  L.  Charmak,  J.  0.  Maxwell, 
M.  Diggs,  J.  G.  Crutcher,  G.  H.  Jackson.  Board  of  Education: 
J.  H.  Wright,  R,  H.  Beamer,  M.  O.  Harling,  E.  T.  Clowe,  J.  I. 
McConnell.  A.  G.  Read,  assessor ;  Herman  Kuhn,  marshal ;  J.  F. 
Garrette,  treasurer;  R.  B.  Mosby,  clerk,  P.  W.  Fisher,  recorder. 

April  13,  1891 — Board  of  Trustees:  George  H.  Jackson,  G.  W. 
Hiatt,  Dr.  Thomas  Ross,  J.  F.  Duncan,  W.  G.  Hunt.  Frank  Dietz, 
assessor;  J.  C.  Harlan,  treasurer;  R.  B.  Mosby,  clerk;  P.  W.  Fisher 
recorder;  Herman  Kuhn,  marshal.  Board  of  Education:  J.  I. 
McConnell,  R,  H.  Beamer,  M.  O.  Harling,  J.  H.  Wright,  E.  T. 
Clowe. 

1893— Board  of  Trustees:  L.  Charmak,  L.  B.  Holmes,  J.  0. 
Maxwell.  L.  A.  Ervin,  marshal;  J.  C.  Harlan,  treasurer;  C.  M. 
Barney,  assessor;  P.  W.  Fisher,  recorder.  Board  of  Education: 
F.  E.  Baker,  C.  Q.  Nelson,  N.  M.  Weaver. 

1895— Board  of  Trustees:  J.  W.  Bandy,  C.  M.  Hiddleson. 
Robert  Warren,  marshal;  James  C.  Harlan,  treasurer;  R.  L.  Sinkey, 
assessor;  A.  C.  Ruggles,  recorder;  E.  E.  Gaddis,  attorney.  Board 
of  Education:  George  Banks,  J.  O.  Chalmers. 

1897— Board  of  Trustees:  A.  M.  Britt,  L.  Charmak,  A.  Moss- 
mayer.  J.  B.  Lawson,  marshal;  R.  B.  Mosby,  clerk;  James  C. 
Harlan,  treasurer;  R.  L.  Sinkey,  assessor;  J.  E.  Strong,  attorney; 
P.  W.  Fisher,  recorder.  Board  of  Education:  M.  Diggs,  J.  I. 
McConnell,  M.  O.  Harling. 

1899— Board  of  Trustees:  W.  P.  Craig,  T.  B.  Gibson.  J.  B. 
Lawson,  marshal;  W.  B.  Aldrich,  clerk;  J.  C.  Harlan,  treasurer; 
E.  M.  Tilden,  assessor;  W.  A.  Anderson,  attorney;  P.  W.  Fisher, 
recorder.     Board  of  Education:  C.  E.  Dingle,  J.  M.  Day. 

1901— Board  of  Trustees:  E.  P.  Huston,  J.  J.  Brown,  W.  H. 
Troop.  W.  C.  Gwinn,  marshal;  L.  R.  Pierce,  treasurer;  R.  B. 
Mosby,  assessor;  Charles  W.  Pickard,  attorney  and  clerk;  P.  W. 
Fisher,  recorder.  Board  of  Education:  S.  C.  Deaner,  F.  A.  Kauff- 
man,  C.  R.  Wilcoxon. 

1903— Board  of  Trustees:  R,  H.  Beamer,  Douglas  Balfour, 
W.   H.   Troop.     W.   C.   Gwinn,   marshal;   L.   R.   Pierce,   treasurer; 


124  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

A.  G.  Eead,  assessor;  Bryon  Ball,  recorder;  Charles  W.  Pickard, 
attorney  and  clerk.    Board  of  Education :  C.  Q.  Nelson,  J.  M.  Day. 

On  account  of  a  change  of  the  state  law  regarding  the  gov- 
ernment of  cities  of  the  fifth  class  the  officers  elected  at  this  elec- 
tion, with  the  exception  of  City  Trustees  and  Board  of  Education 
were  elected  to  hold  office  for  four  years  and  it  was  also  provided 
that  at  the  next  ensuing  election  five  members  of  each  hoard  should 
be  elected  to  also  hold  office  for  a  term  of  four  years. 

1905— Board  of  Trustees :  W.  H.  Troop,  Joseph  Craig,  W.  H. 
Alexander.  Board  of  Education:  J.  Beith,  Jr.,  F.  A.  Kauffman, 
C.  R.  Wilcoxon. 

1907 — Board  of  Trustees:  J.  R.  Mitchell,  Theodore  Muegge, 
W.  H.  Curson,  W.  A.  Boots,  W.  S.  White.  S.  A.  Leach,  marshal ; 
L.  R.  Pierce,  treasurer;  Charles  W.  Pickard,  attorney  and  clerk; 
Barnard  Rehmke,  recorder;  Frank  Dietz,  assessor.  Board  of 
Education:  J.  Reith,  Jr.,  J.  A.  Murray,  S.  C.  Deaner,  F.  A.  Kauff- 
man, C.  Sieber. 

During  this  term  two  of  the  elected  officers  resigned.  E.  B. 
Mering  was  appointed  to  succeed  C.  W.  Pickard,  whose  resigna- 
tion was  accepted  June  3,  1907,  and  M.  S.  Ish  succeeded  Treasurer 
Pierce,  resigning  October  2,  1907.  The  vote  on  the  question  of 
saloons  resulted  for  saloons  382,  against  353. 

1911— Board  of  Trustees:  J.  R.  Mitchell,  C.  T.  Bidwell,  J.  J. 
Kinkade,  J.  0.  Maxwell  H.  M.  Miller.  R.  Rehmke,  recorder;  G.  E. 
Whitney,  attorney  and  clerk;  L.  H.  Stephens,  treasurer;  Peter 
Scott,  marshal;  Frank  Dietz,  assessor.  Board  of  Education: 
J.  Reith,  Jr.,  J.  L.  Harlan,  F.  C.  Ewert,  R.  J.  Gibson,  C.  W. 
Thomas,  Jr. 

The  vote  on  the  question  of  saloons  resulted  as  follows :  Against 
saloons,  431 ;  for  saloons,  395. 

STATE  AND  COUNTY  OFFICERS  FOR  YEARS  1849  TO  1911 

1849 — State  senator,  M.  G.  Yallejo;  assemblymen,  J.  E.  Braekett 
and  J.  S.  Bradford. 

1850 — State  senator,  Martin  E.  Cook;  assemblyman,  H.  P. 
Osgood;  county  judge,  P.  A.  Marguarn;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  J. 
N.  Borden;  district  attorney,  G.  W.  Crane  and  P.  R.  Moore;  clerk, 

B.  F.  Brown;  assessor,  J.  E.  Braly;  recorder  and  auditor,  G.  W. 
Crane ;  surveyor,  W.  B.  Brown ;  administrator,  G.  W.  Keene ; 
coroner,  C.  F.  Collins;  treasurer,  G.  W.  Keene;  superintendent  of 
public  schools,  duties  by  county  assessor  until  1855. 

1851 — State  senator,  M.  M.  Wombough;  assemblyman,  John  G. 
Parrish;  county  judge-  H.  H.  Hartley;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  E. 
A.  Harris;  district  attorney,  M.  M.  Wombough  and  G.  W.  Keene; 
clerk,  Humphrey  Griffith;  assessor,  Humphrey  Griffith;  recorder  and 
auditor,  (duties  by  county  clerk  until  1873) ;  surveyor,  Charles  F. 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  125 

Reed;  administrator,  G.  W.  Keene;  coroner,  John  Van  Arnam; 
treasurer,  H.  H.  Hartley. 

1852 — State  senator,  M.  M.  Wombougb;  assemblyman,  A.  B. 
Caldwell;  county  judge,  H.  11.  Hartley;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  E. 
A.  Harris;  district  attorney,  G.  H.  Carter  and  B.  F.  Ankeny;  clerk, 
Humphrey  Griffith ;  assessor,  J.  W.  Myrick ;  surveyor,  Charles  F. 
Reed;  administrator,  G.  W.  Keene;  coroner,  John  Van  Arnam; 
treasurer,  Alex  Chisbolm;  supervisors-  J.  B.  Greene,  AY.  G.  Brown, 
Isaac  Laferty,  C.  H.  Cooley,  G.  F.  Brown. 

1853 — State  senator,  Edward  McGarry;  assemblyman,  Hum- 
phrey Griffith;  county  judge,  Harrison  Gwinn;  sheriff  and  tax  col- 
lector, G.  W.  Gish;  district  attorney,  W.  R.  Chapman  and  W.  R. 
Cantwell ;  clerk,  R.  H.  Baskett ;  assessor,  D.  P.  Diggs ;  recorder  and 
auditor  duties  by  clerk  until  1873;  surveyor,  Wm.  Minis;  adminis- 
trator, G.  W.  Keene;  coroner,  John  Smith;  treasurer,  J.  B.  Tilden; 
supervisors,  J.  B.  Tufts,  C.  Chisbolm,  G.  H.  Peck,  W.  G.  Brown, 
A.  H.  Willard. 

1854 — State  senator,  Edward  McGarry;  assemblyman,  J.  H.  Up- 
degraff;  county  judge,  Harrison  Gwinn;  sheriff  and  tax  collector, 
Jas.  A.  Douglas;  district  attorney,  H.  Meredith;  clerk,  R.  H. 
Baskett;  assessor,  P.  J.  Hopper  and  T.  F.  W.  Price;  surveyor,  Wm. 
Minis ;  administrator,  Isaac  Sunderland ;  coroner,  John  Van  Arnam ; 
treasurer,  W.  N.  Brooks ;  supervisors,  Samuel  Wagner,  H.  L.  Robey, 
J.  C.  Hawley,  Wm.  Flanders,  J.  W.  Snowball. 

1855 — State  senator,  S.  Bynum;  assemblyman,  E.  Bynum; 
county  judge,  Harrison  Gwinn;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  Geo.  Bell 
and  F.  G.  Russell ;  district  attorney,  H.  Griffith  and  F.  Woodward ; 
clerk,  A.  McDonald;  assessor,  J.  S.  Cox;  superintendent  of  schools, 
L.  W.  Mering;  surveyor,  Wm.  Minis;  administrator,  E.  A.  Harris; 
coroner,  E.  C.  Taylor;  treasurer,  W.  N.  Brooks;  supervisor,  first 
district,  J.  V.  Iloag;  supervisor,  second  district,  J.  D.  Stephens; 
supervisor,  third  district,  D.  Lamb. 

1857 — State  senator,  Humphrey  Griffith;  assemblyman,  J.  S. 
Curtis  and  Wm.  Minis;  county  judge,  Isaac  Davis;  sheriff  and  tax 
collector.  J.  L.  Cox;  district  attorney,  W.  H.  McGrew;  clerk,  J.  N. 
Pendegast;  assessor,  J.  A.  McCauley;  superintendent  of  public 
schools,  N.  Wyckoff  and  H.  Gaddis;  surveyor,  J.  I.  Underbill;  ad- 
ministrator, Wm.  H.  Marders;  coroner,  I.  N.  Hoag;  treasurer,  W.  N. 
Brooks;  supervisor,  first  district,  J.  V.  Hoag  and  Mike  Bryte; 
supervisor,  second  district,  H.  C.  Riggs;  supervisor,  third  district, 
M.  P.  Ferguson. 

1859 — State  senator,  Henry  Edgerton;  assemblyman,  Harrison 
Gwinn;  county  judge,  Isaac  Davis;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  Jas.  A. 
Douglas;  district  attorney,  I.  W.  Jacobs;  clerk,  J.  T.  Daly;  assessor, 
J.  A.  McCauley;  superintendent  of  public  schools,  H.  Gaddis;  sur- 


126  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

veyor,  Wm.  Minis;  administrator,  W.  N.  Brooks  and  C.  F.  Reed; 
coroner,  J.  S.  Curtis  and  E.  C.  Taylor;  treasurer,  W.  N.  Brooks; 
supervisor,  first  district,  S.  N.  Norton;  supervisor,  second  district, 
G.  E.  Sill;  supervisor,  third  district,  A.  W.  Morris. 

1861 — State  senator,  0.  B.  Powers;  assemblyman,  W.  C.  Wood 
and  I.  N.  Hoag;  county  judge,  J.  B.  Smith  and  I.  N.  Hoag;  sheriff 
and  tax  collector,  C.  H.  Gray;  district  attorney,  H.  I.  Hamblin;  clerk, 
Ed.  B.  Giddings;  assessor,  J.  G.  Overshiner;  superintendent  of 
public  schools,  H.  Gaddis;  surveyor,  A.  Mathews;  administrator,  S. 
F.  Rodolph;  coroner,  S.  F.  Rodolph;  treasurer,  C.  W.  Reed;  super- 
visor, first  district,  S.  N.  Norton;  supervisor,  second  district,  G.  E. 
Sill ;  supervisor,  third  district,  A.  W.  Morris. 

1863 — State  senator,  J.  J.  Hall;  assemblyman,  Ed.  Patten  and 
J.  B.  Hartsough;  county  judge,  L.  R.  Hopkins  and  I.  N.  Hoag; 
sheriff  and  tax  collector,  0.  H.  Gray;  district  attorney.  H.  G.  Bur- 
nett ;  clerk,  L.  E.  Brownell ;  assessor,  P.  Parker ;  superintendent  of 
public  schools,  H.  Gaddis;  surveyor,  A.  Mathews;  administrator,  W. 
S.  Emery;  coroner,  A.  S.  Sprague;  treasurer,  G.  A.  Fabricius; 
supervisor,  first  district,  G.  W.  Bell ;  supervisor,  second  district,  G. 
E.  Sill;  supervisor,  third  district,  A.  W.  Morris. 

1865 — State  senator,  L.  B.  Mizner;  assemblyman,  C.  F.  Reed; 
county  judge,  J.  A.  Hutton;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  Wm.  Minis; 
district  attorney,  H.  G.  Burnett;  clerk,  Ed.  R.  Giddings;  assessor- 
J.  B.  Bullock;  superintendent  of  public  schools,  M.  A.  Woods;  sur- 
veyor, A.  Mathews;  administrator,  G.  W.  Pierce;  coroner,  J.  S. 
Curtis;  treasurer,  Giles  E.  Sill;  supervisor,  first  district,  G.  W.  Bell; 
supervisor,  second  dictrict,  G.  W.  Scott;  supervisor,  third  district, 
S.  N.  Mering. 

1867 — State  senator,  L.  B.  Mizner;  assemblyman,  John  M. 
Kelly;  county  judge,  M.  A.  Woods;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  Wm. 
Minis;  district  attorney,  J.  C.  Ball;  clerk,  E.  Bynum;  assessor,  J.  P. 
Bullock'  et  al.;  superintendent  of  public  schools,  R.  R.  Darby;  sur- 
veyor, J.  I.  Underbill;  administrator,  G.  W.  Pierce;  coroner,  J.  S. 
Miller;  treasurer,  Giles  E.  Sill;  supervisor,  first  district,  G.  W.  Bell; 
supervisor,  second  district,  G.  H.  Swingle;  supervisor,  third  district, 
Ed.  Roberts. 

1869 — State  senator,  Wm.  Minis;  assemblyman,  John  M.  Kelly; 
county  judge,  Jas.  Johnson ;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  J.  P.  Bullock ; 
district  attorney,  J.  C.  Ball;  clerk,  E.  Bynum;  assessor,  J.  J.  Am- 
nions; superintendent  of  public  scbools,R.  R.  Darby;  surveyor,  J. 
I.  Underbill;  administrator,  Giles  E.  Sill;  coroner,  J.  T.  Lillard; 
treasurer,  A.  0.  Kean;  supervisor,  first  district,  L.  B.  Buggies; 
supervisor,  second  district,  G.  H.  Swingle;  supervisor,  third  district. 
Ed.  Roberts. 

1871 — State  senator,  Wm.  Minis;  assemblyman,  F.  S.  Freeman; 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  127 

county  judge,  J.  A.  Hutton;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  J.  P.  Bullock; 
district  attorney,  J.  C.  Ball;  clerk,  D.  Schindler;  assessor,  J.  J. 
Amnions;  superintendent  of  public  schools,  G.  N.  Freeman;  sur- 
veyor, J.  I.  Underbill;  administrator,  E.  R.  Bush;  coroner,  D.  W. 
Edson;  treasurer,  A.  C.  Kean;  supervisor,  first  district,  R.  W. 
Megowan;  supervisor,  second  district,  G.  H.  Swingle;  supervisor, 
third  district,  Ed.  Roberts. 

1873 — State  senator,  H.  E.  McCune;  assemblyman,  F.  S.  Free- 
man ;  county  judge,  J.  A.  Hutton ;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  Carey 
Barney;  district  attorney,  F.  E.  Baker;  clerk,  D.  Schindler;  assessor, 
R.  H.  Beamer;  recorder  and  auditor,  J.  D.  Lawson;  superintendent 
of  public  schools,  G.  N.  Freeman;  surveyor,  L.  Friel;  administrator, 
J.  S.  Stevenson;  coroner,  S.  L.  Monday;  treasurer,  A.  C.  Kean; 
supervisor,  first  district,  R.  W.  Megowan;  supervisor,  second  dis- 
trict, G.  H.  Swingle;  supervisor,  third  district,  Ed.  Roberts;  super- 
visor, fourth  district,  J.  K.  Smith;  supervisor,  fifth  district,  S.  N. 
Mering. 

1875 — State  senator,  H.  E.  McCune;  assemblyman,  Jason  Wat- 
kins;  county  judge,  E.  R.  Bush;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  Carey 
Barney;  district  attorney,  F.  E.  Baker;  clerk,  D.  M.  Burns;  assessor, 
R.  H.  Beamer;  recorder  and  auditor,  J.  A.  Hiller;  superintendent  of 
public  schools,  H.  B.  Pendegast;  surveyor,  M.  A.  Nurse;  adminis- 
trator, A.  S.  House;  coroner,  P.  Krellenberg;  treasurer,  A.  C.  Kean; 
supervisor,  first  district,  R.  W.  Megowan;  supervisor,  second  dis- 
trict, Wm.  Sims;  supervisor,  third  district,  J.  C.  Smith;  supervisor, 
fourth  district,  J.  H.  Harlan;  supervisor,  fifth  district,  S.  N.  Mering. 

1877 — State  senator,  John  Lambert;  assemblyman,  W.  M.  De- 
Witt;  county  judge,  E.  R.  Bush  (superior)  ;  sheriff  and  tax  collector, 
Carey  Barney;  district  attorney,  C.  H.  Garoutte;  clerk,  D.  M. 
Burns;  assessor,  F.  Schlieman;  recorder  and  auditor,  R.  W.  Me- 
gowan; superintendent  of  public  schools,  H.  B.  Pendegast;  surveyor, 
J.  A.  Brown ;  administrator,  S.  L.  Monday ;  coroner,  P.  Krellenberg ; 
treasurer,  A.  C.  Kean;  supervisor,  first  district,  R.  F.  Hester;  super- 
visor, second  district,  Wm.  Sims ;  supervisor,  third  district,  J.  C. 
Smith;  supervisor,  fourth  district,  J.  II.  Harlan;  supervisor,  fifth 
district,  S.  N.  Mering. 

1879 — State  senator,  J.  II.  Harlan;  assemblyman,  D.  N.  Her- 
shey;  county  judge,  E.  R.  Bush;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  F.  M. 
Ralim;  district  attorney,  C.  H.  Garoutte;  clerk,  J.  K.  Smith; 
assessor,  F.  Schlieman;  recorder  and  auditor,  W.  D.  Holcom;  super- 
intendent of  public  schools,  G.  W.  Goin ;  surveyor,  J.  E.  R.  O'Far- 
rell;  administrator,  A.  W.  Tucker;  coroner,  P.  Krellenberg;  treas- 
urer, A.  C.  Kean;  supervisor,  first  district,  R.  F.  Hester;  supervisor, 
second  district,  Wm.  Sims;  supervisor,  third  district,  J.  C.  Smith; 


128  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

supervisor,  fourth  district,  R.  H.  Newton;  supervisor,  fifth  district, 
S.  N.  Mering. 

1882— State  senator,  K.  E.  Kelley;  assemblyman,  D.  N.  Hershey; 
county  judge,  C.  H.  Oaroutte;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  Jason 
Watkins;  district  attorney,  Jos.  Craig;  clerk,  M.  O.  Harling;  as- 
sessor, R.  M.  Huston;  recorder  and  auditor,  R.  F.  Hester;  superin- 
tendent of  public  schools,  G.  W.  Goin ;  surveyor,  E.  P.  Everett ;  ad- 
ministrator, Giles  Sill;  coroner,  C.  Krellenberg;  treasurer,  A.  C. 
Kean;  supervisor,  first  district,  T.  C.  Snider;  supervisor,  second 
district,  J.  F.  Lillard ;  supervisor,  third  district,  J.  C.  Smith ;  super- 
visor, fourth  district,  C.  Nelson;  supervisor,  fifth  district,  J.  S.  Tutt. 

1884 — State  senator,  W.  B.  Parker ;  assemblyman,  C.  B.  Culver ; 
superior  judge,  C.  H.  Garoutte;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  R.  H. 
Beamer;  district  attorney,  F.  S.  Sprague;  clerk,  F.  Schlieman;  as- 
sessor, R.  M.  Huston ;  recorder  and  auditor,  A.  J.  Atchinson ;  super- 
intendent of  public  schools,  G.  W.  Goin;  surveyor,  J.  E.  R.  O'Far- 
rell ;  administrator,  L.  B.  Isham ;  coroner,  P.  Krellenberg ;  treasurer, 
J.  K.  Smith;  supervisor,  first  district,  T.  J.  Hodgdon;  supervisor, 
second  district,  J.  T.  Lillard ;  supervisor,  third  district,  Geo.  Sharp- 
neck;  supervisor,  fourth  district,  W.  H.  Ludden;  supervisor,  fifth 
district,  J.  S.  Tutt. 

1886 — State  senator,  B.  0.  Carr;  assemblyman,  L.  B.  Adams; 
superior  judge,  C.  H.  Garoutte;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  Jason 
Watkins;  district  attorney,  F.  S.  Sprague;  clerk,  M.  O.  Harling; 
assessor,  R.  M.  Huston;  recorder  and  auditor,  A.  J.  Atchinson; 
superintendent  of  public  schools,  Geo.  Banks;  surveyor,  J.  E.  R. 
O'Farrell;  administrator;  G.  W.  Hiatt;  coroner,  L.  0.  Stephens; 
treasurer,  Wm.  Minis;  supervisor,  first  district,  J.  Hodgdon;  super- 
visor, second  district,  T.  W.  Guthrie;  supervisor,  third  district,  L. 
M.  Clark;  supervisor,  fourth  district;  W.  H.  Ludden;  supervisor, 
fifth  district,  J.  S.  Tutt. 

1888 — State  senator,  G.  P.  Harding;  assemblyman,  L.  B. 
Adams;  superior  judge,  C.  H.  Garoutte;  sheriff  and  tax  collector, 
N.  W.  Weaver;  district  attorney,  E.  E.  Gaddis;  clerk,  M.  O.  Har- 
ling; assessor,  R.  M.  Huston;  recorder  and  auditor,  D.  A.  McGriff ; 
superintendent  of  public  schools,  Geo.  Banks;  surveyor,  J.  E.  R. 
O'Farrell;  administrator,  G.  W.  Hiatt;  coroner,  L.  O.  Stephens; 
treasurer,  Wm.  Minis ;  supervisor,  first  district,  T.  C.  Snider ;  super- 
visor, second  district,  T.  W.  Guthrie;  supervisor,  third  district,  L. 
M.  Clark;  supervisor,  fourth  district,  J.  K.  Schuerle;  supervisor, 
fifth  district,  M.  R.  York. 

1890 — State  senator,  G.  P.  Harding;  assemblyman,  R.  Clark; 
superior  judge,  M.  H.  Grant;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  N.  M. 
Weaver;  district  attorney,  R.  E.  Hopkins;  clerk,  R.  W.  Pendegast; 
assessor,  M.  D.  Chamberlin ;  recorder  and  auditor,  D.  A.  McGriff ; 


HISTORY   OF   YOLO   COUNTY  129 

superintendent  of  public  schools,  Geo.  Banks ;  surveyor,  T.  J.  Phil- 
lips; administrator,  M.  L.  Woods;  coroner,  L.  O.  Stephens;  treas- 
urer, J.  H.  Wright;  supervisor,  first  district,  T.  C.  Snider;  super- 
visor, second  district,  William  King;  supervisor,  third  district,  D. 

F.  Houx;  supervisor,  fourth  district,  J.  K.  Schuerle;  supervisor, 
fifth  district,  M.  R.  York. 

1892 — State  senator,  G.  P.  Harding;  assemblyman,  I.  W. 
Jacobs ;  superior  judge,  M.  H.  Grant ;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  D.  H. 
Wyckoff;  district  attorney,  C.  M.  Head;  clerk,  R.  W.  Pendegast; 
assessor,  M.  D.  Chamberlin ;  recorder  and  auditor,  W.  A.  Stephens ; 
superintendent  of  public  schools,  Geo.  Banks;  surveyor,  P.  N.  Ash- 
ley; administrator,  H.  C.  Duncan;  coroner,  D.  0.  Bean;  treasurer, 
Wm.  Minis;  supervisor,  first  district,  Ezra  Casselman;  supervisor, 
second  district,  Wm.  King;  supervisor,  third  district,  D.  F.  Houx; 
supervisor,  fourth  district,  J.  K.  Schuerle;  supervisor,  fifth  dis- 
trict, J.  G.  Fredericks. 

1894 — State  senator,  Eugene  Aram;  assemblyman,  H.  W.  Lau- 
genour;   superior  judge,   M.  H.   Grant;   sheriff  and   tax  collector, 

G.  W.  Griffin ;  district  attorney,  R.  E.  Hopkins ;  clerk,  G.  L.  Duncan ; 
assessor,  M.  D.  Chamberlin;  recorder  and  auditor,  F.  Scblieman; 
superintendent  of  public  schools,  Clara  A.  March;  surveyor,  P.  N. 
Ashley;  administrator,  H.  C.  Duncan;  coroner,  D.  0.  Bean;  treas- 
urer, W.  L.  Wood ;  supervisor,  first  district,  Ezra  Casselman ;  super- 
visor, second  district,  J.  F.  Griffin;  supervisor,  third  district,  D.  F. 
Houx;  supervisor,  fourth  district,  J.  K.  Schuerle;  supervisor,  fifth 
district,  J.  G.  Fredericks. 

1896 — Assemblyman,  A.  W.  North;  superior  judge,  E.  E.  Gad- 
dis;  supervisor,  first  district,  T.  C.  Snider;  supervisor,  second  dis- 
trict, J.  F.  Griffin,  supervisor,  third  district,  D.  F.  Houx;  supervisor, 
fourth  district,  J.  W.  Bandy;  supervisor,  fifth  district,  J.  G.  Fred- 
ericks. 

1898— State  senator,  W.  M.  Cutter ;  assemblyman,  G.  W.  Pierce ; 
superior  judge,  E.  E.  Gaddis;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  G.  W. 
Griffin;  district  attorney,  E.  R.  Bush;  clerk,  G.  L.  Duncan;  assessor, 
J.  K.  Smith;  recorder,  J.  T.  Goodin;  auditor,  Charles  Hadsall; 
superintendent  of  public  schools,  Mrs.  S.  E.  Peart;  surveyor,  P.  N. 
Ashley;  administrator,  J.  F.  Dearing;  coroner,  D.  0.  Bean;  treas- 
urer, W.  L.  Wood;  supervisor,  first  district,  T.  C.  Snider;  super- 
visor, second  district,  W.  O.  Russell;  supervisor,  third  district,  J. 
N.  Decker;  supervisor,  fourth  district,  J.  W.  Bandy;  supervisor, 
fifth  district,  J.  G.  Fredericks. 

1900 — Assemblyman,  J.  F.  Chiles;  supervisor,  first  district,  T. 
C.  Snider ;  supervisor,  second  district,  W.  O.  Russell ;  supervisor, 
third  district,  J.  N.  Decker;  supervisor,  fourth  district,  T.  J. 
Vaughn;  supervisor,  fifth  district,  G.  H.  Hopkins. 


130  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

1902 — Assemblyman,  J.  I.  McConnell;  superior  judge,  E.  E. 
Gadclis;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  G.  W.  Griffin;  district  attorney, 
W.  A.  Anderson;  clerk,  0.  F.  Hadsall;  assessor,  H.  E.  Harrison; 
recorder,  J.  T.  Goodin ;  auditor,  W.  M.  Browning ;  superintendent  of 
public  schools,  Minnie  De  Vilbiss;  surveyor,  P.  N.  Ashley;  adminis- 
trator, J.  S.  Tutt;  coroner,  T.  H.  Kitto;  treasurer,  J.  G.  Cruteher; 
supervisor,  first  district,  T.  C.  Snider;  supervisor,  second  district, 
M.  P.  Ormsby;  supervisor,  third  district,  L.  N.  Taber;  supervisor, 
fourth  district,  T.  J.  Vaughn;  supervisor,  fifth  district,  G.  H. 
Hopkins. 

1904 — Assemblyman,  N.  A.  Hawkins;  supervisor,  first  district, 

E.  A.  Palm;  supervisor,  second  district,  M.  P.  Ormsby;  supervisor, 
third  district,  L.  N.  Taber;  supervisor,  fourth  district,  T.  J.  Vaughn; 
supervisor,  fifth  district,  G.  H.  Hopkins. 

1906 — State  senator,  Jos.  Craig;  assemblyman,  J.  I.  McConnell; 
superior  judge,  E.  E.  Gaddis ;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  Sam  Mont- 
gomery; district  attorney,  W.  A.  Anderson;  clerk,  C.  F.  Hadsall; 
assessor,  H.  E.  Harrison;  recorder,  W.  L.  Ely;  auditor,  R.  P.  Wal- 
lace; superintendent  of  public  schools,  May  E.  Dexter;  surveyor, 
P.  N.  Ashley ;  administrator,  J.  S.  Tutt ;  coroner,  T.  H.  Kitto ;  treas- 
urer, J.  G.  Cruteher;  supervisor,  first  district,  E.  A.  Palm;  super- 
visor, second  district,  Eli  Snider;  supervisor,  third  district,  K.  B. 
Edson;  supervisor,  fourth  district,  T.  J.  Vaughn;  supervisor,  fifth 
district,  G.  H.  Hopkins. 

1908 — Assemblyman,  L.  H.  Wilson ;  superior  judge,  N.  R.  Haw- 
kins; supervisor,  first  district,  E.  A.  Palm;  supervisor,  second  dis- 
trict, Eli  Snider ;  supervisor,  third  district,  F.  B.  Edson ;  supervisor, 
fourth  district,  J.  S.  Scott;  supervisor,  fifth  district,  J.  W.  Monroe. 

1910 — State  senator,  A.  P.  Boynton;  assemblyman,  L.  H.  Wil- 
son; superior  judge,  N.  A.  Hawkins;  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  J.  W. 
Monroe;  district  attorney,  A.  G.  Bailey;  clerk,  H.  R.  Saunders; 
assessor,  H.  E.  Harrison;  recorder,  H.  Henigan;  auditor,  R.  P. 
Wallace ;  superintendent  of  public  schools,  May  E.  Dexter-Henshall ; 
surveyor,  P.  N.  Ashley;  administrator,  A.  L.  Farish;  coroner,  T.  H. 
Kitto;  treasurer,  R.  E.  Cole;  supervisor,  first  district,  E.  A.  Palm; 
supervisor,  second  district,  W.  O.  Russell ;  supervisor,  third  district, 

F.  B.  Edson;  supervisor,  fourth  district,  J.  S.  Scott;  supervisor, 
fifth  district,  M.  H.  Stitt. 

Justices  of  the  Peace  for  the  Last  Ten  Years 

1902— Blacks,  S.  P.  Cutler;  Capay,  S.  H.  Bowles;  Cacheville,  C. 
P.  Summer;  Clarksburg,  D.  R.  Nason;  Cottonwood,  J.  N.  Bicknell; 
Grafton,  M.  P.  Shannon;  Guinda,  J.  H.  Norton;  Putah,  H.  S.  D. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  131 

Deck;  Washington,  C.  A.  Simpson,  Winters,  Jas.  McClure;  "Wood- 
land, E.  T.  Lampton. 

1906 — Blacks — Win.  Sandrock;  Capay,  S.  H.  Bowles;  Cache- 
ville,  S.  L.  Nutting;  Clarksburg,  Geo.  Colby;  Cottonwood,  J.  N. 
Bieknell;  Dunnigan,  Frank  Weedner;  Grafton,  M.  P.  Shannon; 
Guinda,  J.  H.  Norton ;  Putah,  G.  R.  Carey ;  Washington,  C.  A.  Simp- 
son; Winters,  Jas.  McClure;  Woodland,-  E.  T.  Lampton. 

1910— Blacks,  L.  J.  Didion;  Capay,  G.  W.  Tandy;  Cacheville, 
Wirt  Millsap;  Clarksburg,  F.  B.  Wire;  Cottonwood,  J.  N.  Bieknell; 
Dunnigan,  A.  H.  Reager;  Grafton,  C.  C.  Cobb;  Guinda,  J.  H. 
Norton;  Putah,  W.  H.  Scott,  Washington,  C.  A.  Simpson;  Winters, 
W.  P.  Womack;  Woodland,  J.  E.  Strong. 


132  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


CHAPTER  XXVIII 

SCHOOLS  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 
By  Mrs.  May  E.  Dexter-Hen  shall 

In  the  spring  of  1847  in  a  primitive  structure  near  the  banks 
of  Cache  creek  one  mile  from  Gordon's,  Mr.  Tyler,  the  pioneer 
teacher  of  Yolo  county,  gathered  about  him  his  little  flock  of  eight 
pupils  and  taught  them  the  three  R's,  untrammeled  by  any  laws 
governing  education.  Miss  Matilda  McCord,  of  Illinois,  taught  the 
second  school,  which  was  located  at  Fremont  in  1849.  The  school- 
house  was  a  frame  building  erected  by  Jonas  Spect.  Mr.  Wheaton, 
afterwards  a  lawyer  in  San  Francisco,  taught  a  private  school  in 
Washington  at  an  early  date.  It  was  probably  the  third  school 
in  the  county. 

There  was  one  school  in  the  county  in  1851  and  seventy-five 
children  between  four  and  eighteen  years  of  age.  An  early  his- 
torian states  that  the  school  was  probably  located  at  Washington. 
The  reports  of  1852  and  1853  show  that  there  were  two  schools  and 
one  hundred  and  forty-three  children  between  four  and  eighteen 
years  of  age.  These  two  schools  were  at  Washington  and  Yolo 
City,  now  Woodland. 

In  the  early  part  of  1853  the  people  living  south  of  Cache 
creek  who  had  children  needing  school  facilities  erected  a  building 
on  the  land  later  owned  by  R.  L.  Beamer,  within  four  rods  of  the 
south  line  of  his  place,  and  where  Fourth  street  would  intersect  it 
if  continued  far  enough  north.  The  building  was  16x20  feet,  the 
frame,  floor,  windows,  and  door  casings  being  of  sawed  oak  lumber, 
while  the  roof  and  sides  were  covered  with  oak  shakes.  There 
were  four  windows,  two  on  either  side,  and  a  door  in  the  west  end. 
The  furniture  consisted  of  seats  eight  feet  long,  made  from  two- 
inch  planks,  by  inserting  pins  into  them  for  legs,  the  desk  being  a 
seat  with  longer  legs.  The  lumber  was  all  hand-sawed  by  Joseph 
German.  J.  C.  Welch  was  the  first  teacher.  He  was  paid  $100  a 
month  by  the  school  patrons,  John  Morris,  Robert  Welch,  F.  C. 
Ruggles,  Mrs.  High,  J.  M.  Harbin,  George  McConnell,  William  G. 
Belcher,  John  Cops,  William  Gordon,  the  Wolfskills,  and  Hap. 
Works  of  Gordon  Valley.  The  books  used  were  such  as  each  fam- 
ily happened  to  possess.  There  were  Ray's,  Smith's,  and  Smiley 's 
arithmetics,  Smith's  grammar,  and  several  kinds  of  readers.  The 
school  was  taught  five  months  by  Mr.  Welch,  commencing  in  April 
or  May,  and  the  attendance  averaged  about  twenty  pupils.  He 
was  succeeded  by  Joseph  German,  followed  by  L.  B.  Ruggles.  The 
building  was  afterwards  given  to  the  public  and  in  it  was  taught 
the  first  public  school  by  Rev.  J.  N.  Pendegast,  in  District  No.  1. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  133 

Sometime  during  1853  a  school-house  was  built  on  the  land  now 
owned  by  A.  W.  Morris,  north  of  Cache  creek,  and  as  the  school 
census  reports  of  1854  show  but  three  schools  in  the  county,  they 
must  have  been  in  the  Woodland,  Reed,  and  Washington  buildings. 
The  Reed  school-house  was  in  Cache  Creek  District  No.  2,  which 
was  north  of  the  creek.  Previous  to  1855  the  county  assessor  had 
supervision  over  the  schools  of  the  county. 

On  September  13,  1855,  L.  M.  Mering  was  elected  county 
school  superintendent.  No  records  are  on  file  for  the  year  that  he 
served,  as  his  books  and  papers  were  burned.  Fortunately  he  had 
filed  a  report  with  the  state  superintendent.  His  reports  shows  that 
the  following  districts  were  in  existence : 

Cache  Creek,  Districts  Nos.  1  and  2,  with  number  of  children 
between  the  ages  of  four  and  eighteen  years  of  age,  278 ;  Washing- 
ton No.  1,  64;  and  Cottonwood  No.  1,  95. 

The  lowest  salary  paid  was  $60  per  month  and  the  highest 
was  $100.  The  average  school  term  was  five  months.  The  teach- 
ers employed  were  L.  B.  Ruggles,  C.  D.  Tibbetts,  Emma  Alexan- 
der, M.  A.  Wheaton,  and  M.  Woods.  The  total  amount  expended 
for  educational  purposes  in  1855  was  $1,543.50. 

N.  Wyckoff  was  appointed  superintendent  of  schools  on  No- 
vember 20,  1856.  He  was  succeeded  by  Henry  Gaddis  on  Septem- 
ber 15,  1857.  Of  those  early  days  his  widow,  Mrs.  Anna  Barnes, 
has  given  most  interesting  information.  The  superintendent  did 
not  have  an  office.  People  who  wished  to  transact  business  with 
him  went  to  his  home.  The  applicants  who  wished  to  teach  came 
to  him  to  be  examined.  They  would  travel  for  miles  on  horseback 
through  the  forest,  and,  with  carpet-bag  in  hand,  ask  for  a  night's 
lodging  and  for  permission  to  teach.  "Every  greenhorn  that  came 
thought  he  could  teach  in  '  Calif orny.'  "  The  optimistic  remark, 
"I  reckon  I  can  brush  up  a  bit,"  was  often  heard. 

After  the  applicant  had  rested  over  night  and  been  fortified  by 
a  generous  meal  of  fried  chicken,  provided  by  the  superintendent's 
sympathetic  wife,  the  examination  commenced.  It  was  usually 
oral.  Webster's  international  spelling  book  proved  the  Waterloo 
of  many  a  crestfallen  applicant,  for  failure  to  spell  correctly  was 
an  offense  not  to  be  condoned  by  Mr.  Oaddis. 

As  the  years  went  by  the  teachers  were  examined  by  an  exam- 
ining board.  The  early  records  give  names  of  examiners  and  those 
examined.  If  successful,  the  one  word  "AiDproved"  was  placed 
after  the  applicant's  name.  If  unsuccessful,  the  word  "Disap- 
proved" was  written.  After  an  instructor  had  taught  school  a 
year  he  had  to  be  examined  again.  Teaching  had  not  then  reached 
the  dignity  of  a  profession. 

Neither  were  the  people  agitated  by  the  question   of  "state 


134  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

text-books."     Each  child  studied  from  the  hooks  his  parents  hap- 
pened to  possess. 

Promotion  certificates  and  diplomas  of  graduation  had  not  at 
that  time  caused  any  unrest  to  pupils,  teachers,  or  parents.  At  the 
close  of  the  term  the  pupils  would  mark  the  page  that  they  had 
studied  last.  The  next  year  a  new  teacher  would  appear,  have  them 
go  hack  to  the  beginning,  and  study  it  all  over  again. 

Pupils  sat  on  benches  and  had  benches  in  front  of  them  for 
their  books.  The  big  rawhide  or  black-snake  occupied  a  prominent 
place  and  kept  an  outward  serenity  iu  the  overcrowded  school- 
rooms. At  the  close  of  the  month  the  teacher  would  have  to  go  to 
the  home  of  the  superintendent  for  his  salary  warrant  and  then 
travel  on  horseback  to  Cacheville,  the  county  seat,  to  have  it  cashed. 

Among  the  pioneers  who  have  left  a  lasting  impression  upon 
the  minds  and  hearts  of  the  people  is  Mrs.  F.  S.  Freeman.  When 
a  girl  of  seventeen  in  her  comfortable  Eastern  home  she  read 
"Colton's  Three  Years  in  California."  Fascinated  with  the  tales 
she  read,  she  decided  to  see  this  western  land.  She  made  the  trip 
in  1856  by  the  Nicaragua  route.  Shortly  after  her  arrival  she  com- 
menced teaching  a  subscription  school  three  miles  from  Folsom. 
Each  pupil  paid  her  $1  per  week,  bringing  the  money  to  her  each 
Monday.  At  the  close  of  the  term  she  decided  to  go  to  Yolo  City 
(Woodland).  She  crossed  the  Sacramento  river  on  a  ferry-boat 
and  traveled  on  horseback  from  seven  o'clock  in  the  morning  until 
seven  in  the  evening  through  the  woods  between  Sacramento  and 
Yolo  City.  Because  of  the  oak  grove  in  which  Yolo  City  was  lo- 
cated Mrs.  Freeman,  at  a  later  date,  suggested  that  the  village  be 
called  Woodland.  When  the  postoffice  was  changed  from  Cache- 
ville to  Yolo  City  the  name  Woodland  was  given  to  the  place. 

In  those  early  days  Mrs.  Freeman  was  known  as  Miss  Ger- 
trude Swain,  and  was  elected  first  teacher  to  occupy  the  new  school 
building  that  was  erected  in  Yolo  City  in  1856,  one  block  west  of 
the  eastern  termination  of  Main  street.  The  upper  part  of  the  new 
school  building  was  used  as  a  Masonic  hall. 

The  trustees,  Mr.  Giddings,  F.  C.  Euggles,  and  Rev.  J.  N. 
Pendegast,  asked  Miss  Swain  a  few  general  questions,  gave  her 
some  words  to  spell,  had  her  read  two  verses  from  one  of  Longfel- 
low's poems,  and  then  pronounced  her  qualified  to  teach  the  sixty 
restless  lads  and  lassies  of  the  village.  She  proved  herself  equal 
to  the  undertaking,  and  names  with  pride  as  her  former  pupils,  R. 
H.  Beamer,  J.  I.  McConnell,  D.  M.  Burns,  Wirt  Pendegast,  Henry 
Fisher,  Mrs.  Mary  Beamer  Brown,  and  many  others. 

It  was  not  an  uncommon  sight  to  see  three  or  four  children 
on  the  back  of  one  horse  wending  their  way  through  the  woods  to 
school.  They  were  all  ages,  from  the  tiny  "A,  B,  C's"  to  the  stal- 
wart youth  who  was  as  old  as  his  teacher.    The  salary  paid  was  $60 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  135 

a  month.  The  school  was  in  session  three  months  in  the  summer 
and  three  months  in  the  winter.  Miss  Swain  taught  the  school  for 
two  years.  She  was  succeeded  by  J.  C.  Welch,  who  was  followed 
by  Miss  Carrie  Templeton.  The  school  had  grown  so  large  that  it 
was  divided  into  two  rooms.  Prof.  Giles  Freeman  and  his  wife 
were  elected  teachers. 

The  school  building  which  was  erected  in  1856  was  built  on 
land  not  belonging  to  the  district,  and  resulted  in  expensive  litiga- 
tion in  after  years.  C.  W.  Crocker,  who  owned  the  land  on  which 
it  was  built,  failed  to  make  either  a  deed  to  the  district  or  to 
reserve  it  when  he  sold  the  farm,  and  the  property,  after  passing 
through  several  hands,  was  finally  purchased  by  W.  L.  Messenger 
and  George  D.  Fiske,  who  offered  to  sell  the  same  to  the  district 
for  $250.  By  a  majority  of  three  the  people  voted  the  requisite 
amount  for  Messenger  and  Fiske;  also  $300  to  pay  the  Masons  for 
their  interest,  and  $300  for  teachers'  salaries.  The  collection  of 
the  tax  was  contested.  The  supreme  court  decided  in  favor  of  the 
tax.  As  the  value  of  the  lot  had  increased  in  the  meantime  until  it 
was  worth  four  times  the  amount  of  their  first  offer,  Messenger  and 
Fiske  refused  to  sell  it  for  $250.  The  trustees  prosecuted  them  in 
the  courts  for  a  year  or  two  in  a  vain  effort  to  force  an  acceptance 
of  the  offer.  The  building  was  finally  decided  to  be  the  property  of 
Messenger  and  Fiske.  Afterwards  it  was  used  as  a  hotel  and  was 
called  the  Travelers'  Rest,  or  Quilty  Building. 

The  district  being  without  a  school-house,  a  vote  was  taken  to 
see  if  the  people  would  authorize  a  tax  to  build  one.  The  vote  was 
not  in  favor  of  the  tax.  At  the  time  a  lot  was  offered  for  school 
purposes  at  $400,  and  to  secure  it  twenty  progressive  men  sub- 
scribed $20  each,  and  after  having  purchased  it  offered  it  to  the 
district  as  a  gift,  provided  a  school-house  was  built  on  it.  Another 
election  was  called  and  the  proposition  received  but  seventeen  nega- 
tive votes.  The  following  are  most  of  the  names  of  those  who  pre- 
sented the  lot  to  the  district:  Clark  Elliot,  Nathan  Elliot,  R.  B. 
Blowers,  D.  A.  Jackson,  Dr.  George  H.  Jackson,  J.  G.  A.  Overshiner, 
C.  P.  Sprague,  George  D.  Fiske,  James  Asberry,  A.  C.  Ruggles, 
F.  C.  Ruggles,  F.  S.  Freeman,  L.  F.  Craft,  G.  E.  Sill,  J.  M.  Garoutte, 
O.  D.  Wescott,  A.  S.  House,  D.  M.  White,  and  W.  L.  Messenger.  The 
trustees  procured  plans  and  specifications,  and  in  August,  1871, 
commenced  to  erect  the  structure  that  is  now  known  as  the  Main 
Street  school  building.  It  cost  nearly  $16,000.  In  March.  1872,  the 
legislature  passed  a  special  Act  authorizing  the  levying  of  taxes 
and  issuing  of  bonds  to  enable  Woodland  district  to  complete  the 
building  and  pay  the  debts  already  incurred. 

At  the  present  time  (1912)  there  are  three  elementary  school 
buildings  in  Woodland  named  after  the  principal  street  upon  whicli 
each  is  located,  as  follows:  Main,  Walnut  and  Oak. 


136  HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

The  following  is  the  official  list  of  the  districts,  clerks,  postoffice 

addresses,  and  teachers  of  Yolo  county  for  the  year  ending  June 

30,  1912: 

Apricot — August  Brinck,  Winters.  Teacher,  Mrs.  Anna  C.  Greg- 
ory. 

Buckeye — Chas.  Allen,  Winters.    Teacher,  Mrs.  Maude  Lamme. 

Cache  Creek— G.  L.  Griffith,  Woodland.  Teachers,  Edith  V.  Edmis- 
ton,  Mrs.  Lulu  H.  Windsor. 

Cacheville — Bernard  Borach,  Yolo.  Teachers,  D.  D.  Sturgis,  Mar- 
garet Shell. 

Canon — C.  W.  Kingshury,  Brooks.    Teacher,  June  B.  Smith. 

Cadenasso — H.  C.  Howard,  Brooks.    Teacher,  Gatsey  Landrum. 

Capay— L.  A.  Eddy,  Capay.    Teacher,  Lillie  L.  Laugenour. 

Cottonwood — L.  E.  Kale,  Madison.    Teacher,  Elsie  White. 

Clover— Wm.  Eeiff,  Madison.    Teacher,  Mary  Vasey. 

Davis— J.  C.  Luft,  Davis.  Teachers,  E,  C.  Kissling,  Elsa  V.  Boyds- 
tun,  Hazel  Hyde. 

Enterprise— D.  F.  Houx,  Blacks.    Teacher,  Frank  Hulbert. 

Esparto— C.  F.  Derby,  Esparto.  Teachers,  T.  L.  Herbert,  Julia  Mc- 
Willianis. 

Eureka— Chas.  C.  Morris,  Grafton.    Teacher,  Blanch  I.  Laird. 

Fairfield— Win.  Oeste,  Davis.    Teacher,  Vivian  Yater. 

Fairview— Edward  Linderman,  Capay.    Teacher,  Elizabeth  Powers. 

Fillmore — W.  H.  Browning,  Woodland.    Teacher,  Julia  Bray. 

Gordon — S.  L.  Norton,  Madison.    Teacher,  Lester  C.  Dalbey. 

Grafton— M.  F.  Huber,  Grafton.  Teachers,  T.  L.  Whitehead,  Alma 
Brandenberg. 

Guinda— A.  H.  Beard,  Guinda.    Teacher,  Stella  Harris. 

Jefferson— J.  C.  Smith,  Courtland.    Teacher,  Lillie  Bean. 

Laugenour— J.  W.  Gallup,  Woodland.     Teacher,  Stacy  Armstrong. 

Liberty— Mrs.  W.  W.  Vickroy,  Woodland.  Teacher,  Mrs.  May 
Sharpnaek. 

Lisbon — M.  S.  Contente,  Freeport.    Teacher,  Marion  Duncan. 

Madison — J.  T.  Archer,  Madison.     Teacher,  Florence  Armstrong. 

Merritt— B.  J.  Waterbury,  Clarksburg.  Teachers,  Myrtle  Eowe, 
Gertrude  Watson. 

Monument — J.  J.  Merkley,  Sacramento.    Teacher,  Lucy  V.  J.  Riley. 

Mountain— Robert  Clooney,  Capay.    Teacher,  Aida  Cadenasso. 

Mt.  Pleasant— George  J.  Snyder,  Madison.  Teacher,  Mrs.  E.  J. 
Craig. 

North  Grafton— A.  H.  Eeager,  Dunnigan.  Teacher,  Widde  Ken- 
drick. 

Oat  Creek— D.  H.  Long,  Blacks.  Teacher,  Elizabeth  McGrew. 

Parks — Mrs.  S.  Pritchett,  Brooks.    Teacher,  Elvie  Swinney. 

Plainfield— H.  0.  Purinton,  Plainfield.    Teacher,  Mary  Hall. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  137 

Pleasant  Prairie — Frank  Cook,  Woodland.    Teacher,  Marian  Stone. 

Prairie — L.  J.  Didion,  Blacks.    Teacher,  Arthur  E.  Mills. 

Rumsey — Geo.  A.  Farish,  Rumsey.     Teacher,  Edna  Williams. 

Sacramento  River — George  C.  Lauken,  Sacramento.  Teacher,  Kate 
Merkley. 

Spring  Lake — E.  S.  Farnham,  Woodland.  Teacher,  Frances  Sim- 
mons. 

Summit — A.  A.  Logan,  Guinda.     Teacher,  Hilda  Fisher. 

Union — Mrs.  Clarence  Scott,  Winters.     Teacher,  Mahel  Sackett. 

Washington — Frank  De  Riso,  Broderick.  Teachers,  Carolyne  M. 
Webh,  Irma  Phleger,  Olive  Martinelli,  Anna  M.  Dixon,  Vita 
Baker,  Mary  Duff. 

Wildwood — A.  H.  Abele,  Arbuckle.    Teacher,  Maude  Kast. 

Willow  Spring — John  Horgan,  Blacks.    Teacher,  Ellen  Kelly. 

Woodland  Prairie — W.  C.  Schuder,  Woodland.  Teacher,  Merlin 
Ogden. 

Winters — Geo.  R.  Sidwell,.  Winters.  Teachers,  Stewart  0.  Samuels, 
Emily  Seaman,  Edith  Overhouse,  Edna  Stark,  Alma  Sims, 
Mrs.  Bertha  Young ;  music,  Helene  J.  Sloane. 

Woodland— C.  E.  Dingle,  Woodland.  Teachers,  C.  E.  Dingle,  Har- 
riett S.  Lee,  Kathryn  Simmons,  Annie  McWilliams,  Mabel 
Griffes,  Bertha  Laugenour,  Florence  Murray,  Eleanor  Shell, 
Lola  Bray,  Jennie  Gibson,  Gertrude  White,  M.  Ella  Baker, 
Rhoda  Maxwell;  kindergarten,  Anne  Reith;  music,  March  Clem- 
ents. 

HIGH   SCHOOLS 

Esparto  Union  High— J.  L.  Stephens,  Madison.  Teachers,  Charles 
G.  Davis,  Ethel  Davis,  Violet  Beck,  Lillian  Secrest. 

Pierce  Joint  Union  High — J.  E.  Cain,  Arbuckle.  Teachers,  J.  Perry 
Ratzell,  A.  R.  Baird,  Mildred  Martin,  Clara  Shira. 

Winters  Joint  Union  High — F.  W.  Wilson,  Winters.  Teachers, 
Louise  Mayne,  Mary  Stewart,  Kate  Zimmerman,  Bessie  Mayne, 
Matilda  Hayes. 

Woodland  High — Wm.  M.  Hyman,  Woodland.  Teachers,  William 
M.  Hyman,  Mrs.  L.  D.  Lawhead,  Lola  J.  Simpson,  Oda  M. 
Smith,  Olive  Montgomery,  Ella  Tuttle,  Veta  Hurst,  G.  T.  Kern. 

Yolo  County  Board  of  Education— C.  E.  Dingle,  Woodland ;  Wm.  M. 
Hyman,  Woodland;  Annie  McWilliams,  Woodland;  R.  C.  Kiss- 
ling,  Davis ;  May  E.  Dexter-Henshall,  Woodland. 

May  E.  Dexter-Henshall,  superintendent  of  schools. 

Suspended  Districts — Franklin,  Monday  and  Willow  Slough. 

SCHOOL  DISTRICTS 

The  earliest  record  of  the  establishment  of  a  school  district  as 
shown  by  the  records  of  the  board  of  supervisors  was  on  October 
7,  1856.    No  name  was  given  to  the  district.     (A-197.)     On  Decern- 


138  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

ber  3,  1856,  the  following  districts  were  in  existence,  as  the  records 
show  that  school  funds  were  apportioned  to  them:  Cache  Creek 
North,  Cache  Creek  South,  Washington.  (A-219.)  On  January  7, 
1857,  N.  Wyckoff,  superintendent  of  schools,  made  the  following 
order:  "To  prevent  confusion  from  the  similarity  of  names,  it  is 
ordered  by  this  office  that  districts  shall  be  numbered  as  follows : 
Cache  Creek  South  shall  be  known  as  District  No.  1;  Cache  Creek 
North,  District  No.  2;  Washington,  District  No.  3;  Cottonwood, 
District  No.  4;  Cache  Creek  on  the  Colusa  Plains  (probably  the 
early  name  for  Prairie  District),  District  No.  5. 

From  the  records  of  the  boards  of  supervisors  and  also  those 
kept  by  Henry  Gaddis,  superintendent  of  schools  from  1857  to  1863, 
the  names  of  the  districts  and  dates  they  were  established  have 
been  secured.  As  some  of  the  districts  were  not  named  when  they 
were  established  and  some  of  them  changed  their  names  after  they 
were  formed,  it  has  been  impossible  to  give  an  accurate  record  of 
the  establishment  of  each  of  the  present  districts.  The  following  is 
a  list  of  the  districts  and  the  dates  they  were  established : 

Cache  Creek  North,  No.  1. 

Cache  Creek  South,  No.  2. 

Washington,  No.  3. 

Cottonwood,  No.  4,  May  4,  1858. 

West  of  Cache  Creek  North,  No.  5,  Mav  4,  1858. 

West  of  Cache  Creek  South,  No.  6,  May  4,  1858. 

Knight's  Landing,  No.  7,  May  4,  1858. 

South  Putah,  No.  8,  June,  1858. 

North  Putah,  No.  9,  June,  1858. 

Buckeye,  No.  10,  September  11,  1858. 

Cacheville,  No.  11,  October,  1858. 

Grand  Island,  No.  12,  August  2,  1859. 

Merritt,  No.  13,  August  2,  1859. 

Fillmore,  No.  14,  February  25,  1861. 

Fremont  (Svcamore  Grove),  No.  15,  November,  1859. 

Plainfield,  No.  16,  June  17,  1861. 

Willow  Slough,  No.  17,  October  10,  1861. 

Monument,  No.  18,  November  5,  1861. 

Pine  Grove,  No.  19  (Winters  District). 

Cache  Creek  Vallev  School  District  (Canon),  No.  20,  November 
6,  1862. 

Union,  No.  21,  November  6,  1862. 

Woodland  Prairie,  No.  22,  August  3,  1863. 

Richland,  No.  23,  1864. 

Sacramento  River,  No.  24,  November  7,  1864. 

Mount  Nebo,  No.  25,  November  7,  1864. 

Eureka,  No.  26,  May  2,  1865. 

Cottonwood,  No.  27,  August  15,  1865. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  139 

Capav,  No.  28,  March  5,  1866. 

Putah,  No.  29,  May  7,  1866. 

Excelsior,  No.  30,  May  8,  1866. 

Enterprise,  No.  31,  August  8,  1866. 

Vernon,  April  4,  1867. 

Pleasant  Prairie,  No.  33,  May  8,  1867. 

Fair  View,  March  9,  1868. 

Fair  View  (probably  Spring  Lake),  May  5,  18(58. 

Clover,  August  4,  1868. 

Yolo,  September  7,  1868. 

Mount  Pleasant,  March  1,  1869. 

North  Grafton,  April  6,  1869. 

Montgomery,  February  8,  1870. 

Lisbon,  May  4,  1870. 

Haight,  March  6,  1871. 

Center,  May  6,  1872. 

Mountain,  January  12,  1875. 

Langville,  May  12,  1875. 

Jefferson,  April  11,  1876. 

Occidental,  July  10,  1876. 

Jefferson,  January  8,  1877. 

Quicksilver,  January  8,  1877. 

Champion,  July  19,"  1880. 

Wildwood,  May  10,  1881. 

Bufort,  May  10,  1881. 

Pacific,  October  13,  1885. 

Oat  Creek,  April  6,  1886. 

East  Slope,  March  5,  1890. 

Cleveland,  March  5,  1890. 

Escalante,  March  5,  1890. 

City  of  Woodland  School  District  of  Yolo  Countv,  July  9,  1890. 

Guinda,  April  7,  1891. 

Monday,  May  5,  1891. 

Madison,  April  3,  1894. 

Summit,  April  2,  1895. 

New  district  (not  named),  March  1,  1897. 

Fillmore,  February  7,  1910. 

Additional  districts  are  mentioned  in  the  reports  of  1867,  '69, 
'70,  and  '71  made  by  the  superintendents  to  the  supervisors,  as 
follows:  Woodland,  Buchanan,  Prairie,  Grafton,  Franklin,  Monitor, 
Gordon,  Fairfield,  Liberty. 

Vernon  and  Franklin  Districts  were  consolidated  on  May  10, 
1881.  Wildwood  District  in  Y"olo  county  consolidated  with  Wild- 
wood  District  in  Colusa  county  September  12,  1881.  Montgomery 
District  was  re-established  June  6,  1887.  Montgomery  District  was 
lapsed  July  15,  1891.    Pine  Grove  District  was  named  Winters  Dis- 


140  HISTOEY  OP  YOLO  COUNTY 

trict  on  June  6,  1887.  Occidental  District  was  named  Bumsey 
April  5,  1892.  Pacific  District  lapsed  July  2,  1894.  Eureka  and 
Buchanan  Districts  united  September  20,  1897,  and  formed  Eureka 
District.  Center  District  lapsed  July  3,  1899.  Monitor  District 
lapsed  June  8,  1900.  Cleveland  District  lapsed  June  3,  1907.  Frank- 
lin District  was  suspended  August  3,  1909.  Willow  Slough  District 
was  suspended  August  7,  1911.  Monday  District  was  suspended 
August  7,  1911.  Parks  District  was  suspended  August  5,  1912. 
Mountain  District  was  suspended  August  5,  1912.  Monday  District 
lapsed  August  5,  1912.  Summit  District  was  suspended  August  5, 
1912. 

The  list  of  school  superintendents  of  Yolo  county,  with  date  of 
election,  is  as  follows:  L.  M.  Mering,  September  13,  1855;  N. 
Wyckoff,  November  20,  1856  (appointed) ;  Henry  Gadclis,  Septem- 
ber 15,  1857;  Henry  Gaddis,  September  10,  1859;  Henrv  Gaddis, 
September  4,  1861 ;  Henry  Gaddis,  September  2,  1863 ;  M.  A.  Woods, 
September  6,  1865;  R.  B.  Darby,  September  4,  1867;  B.  R.  Darby, 
January  13,  1868 ;  E.  E.  Darby,  September  6,  1869 ;  G.  N.  Freeman, 
September  11,  1871 ;  G.  N.  Freeman,  September  3,  1873 ;  H.  B.  Pen- 
degast,  September  6,  1875;  H.  B.  Pendegast,  September  5,  1877; 
J.  W.  Goin,  September  3,  1879;  J.  W.  Goin,  November  7,  1882; 
George  Banks,  November  2,  1886;  George  Banks,  November  11, 
1890;  Clara  A.  March,  November  6,  1894  (died  July,  1897);  H.  B. 
Pendegast,  July  8,  1897  (appointed) ;  Mrs.  S.  E.  Peart,  November 
8,  1898;  Mrs.  Minnie  De  Vilbiss,  November  10,  1902  (died  January, 
1906) ;  May  E.  Dexter,  January  15,  1906  (appointed)  ;  May  E.  Dex- 
ter, November  6,  1906 ;  May  E.  Dexter-Henshall,  November  8,  1910. 

HESPERIAN    COLLEGE 

Hesperian  College  was  organized  June  20,  1860,  by  the  citizens 
of  Yolo  City,  under  leadership  of  Prof.  O.  L.  Mathews.  Ten  acres 
of  land  were  donated  by  M.  M.  Harris,  five  for  the  college  and  five 
for  the  residence  of  Professor  Mathews.  The  sum  of  $4,925  was 
subscribed  in  scholarships.  The  cash  donation  amounted  to  $1,025. 
All  this  was,  by  a  contract  with  the  citizens,  to  go  to  Prof.  O.  L. 
Mathews,  who  was  to  erect  a  building  and  conduct  an  academy  or 
seminary  for  five  years  called  "Yolo  Seminary."  At  the  end  of 
five  years  the  property  was  to  belong  to  Mr.  Mathews. 

On  January  18,  1861,  a  committee  of  stockholders  reported  on 
a  change  of  plan,  owing  to  the  fact  that  it  would  take  several  thou- 
sand dollars  more  than  was  originally  anticipated.  They  reported 
a  plan  whereby  the  property  and  premises  may  and  shall  be  for- 
ever devoted  to  the  cause  of  education  and  agreed  to  pay  Professor 
Mathews  $700  for  his  interest,  carry  out  his  obligations,  and  em- 
ploy his  teachers. 

The  committee  further  reported  and  advised  that  a  temporary 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  141 

board  of  five  trustees  be  selected  to  conduct  and  control  said  enter- 
prise, employ  teacbers,  and  to  employ  Professor  Matbews  to  take 
charge  of  the  same;  that  a  committee  be  appointed  to  apply  to  the 
legislature  for  certificate  of  incorporation  with  a  permanent  board 
of  trustees,  and  that  three-fourths  of  the  same  shall  be  members 
in  good  standing  of  the  religious  body  known  as  the  Christian 
Church;  that  a  committee  be  appointed  to  draft  a  plan  of  organiza- 
tion and  prepare  a  charter  for  a  collegiate  institution,  and  on  ap- 
proval to  submit  the  same  to  the  present  session  of  the  legislature 
of  California  (1861)  and  they  be  petitioned  to  pass  the  same. 

The  committee  advised  that  a  general  agent  be  appointed 
whose  duty  it  shall  be  to  canvass  the  state  and  solicit  aid  for  the 
institution  in  money,  books,  apparatus,  etc.,  and  that  a  special 
agent  be  appointed  to  solicit  aid  in  Yolo  county  and  the  counties 
adjacent. 

This  report  was  submitted  by  a  committee  January  8,  1861, 
which  committee  was  composed  of  J.  N.  Pendegast,  N.  Wyckoff,  J. 
C.  Welch,  F.  S.  Freeman  and  R.  L.  Beamer,  and  the  same  was 
adopted,  and  the  following  were  elected  as  the  board  of  trustees, 
viz.:  Joshua  Lawson,  James  F.  Morris,  H.  M.  Fiske,  and  J.  C. 
Welch.  J.  N.  Pendegast,  0.  L.  Mathews  and  W.  W.  Stephenson 
were  appointed  a  committee  to  petition  the  legislature  to  incor- 
porate the  institution  under  a  board  of  trustees,  three-fourths  of 
whom  should  be  members,  in  good  standing,  of  the  Christian 
Church. 

On  March  11,  1861,  Professor  Mathews  assigned  his  interest  to 
said  trustees,  in  consideration  of  $700,  and  he  was  employed  i "resi- 
dent of  the  institution.  The  first  term  of  the  institution  opened  on 
the  first  Monday  in  March,  1861.  On  March  6,  1861,  the  treasurer 
made  report  showing  that  he  had  received  $4,813.13  from  scholar- 
ships and  donations  and  had  paid  out  $4,999.80.  At  the  same  meet- 
ing  J.  N.  Pendegast,  of  the  building  committee,  made  a  report  show- 
ing that  in  building,  the  institution  was  in  debt  above  its  assets,  in 
the  sum  of  $2,238.04.  About  this  time  the  name  of  the  institution 
was  changed  from  "Yolo  Seminary"  to  Hesperian  College. 

The  minutes  show  that  down  to  1894  the  president  of  the  insti- 
tution was  a  member  of  the  Christian  Church  and  that  the  faculty 
at  all  times  had  been  composed  of  members  of  the  Christian  Chinch. 

On  January  20,  1868,  the  board  of  trustees  present  J.  N.  Pende- 
gast, F.  S.  Freeman,  R,  L.  Reamer  and  F.  Giddmgs,  selected  a 
temporary  board  of  trustees  for  the  incorporation  of  the  college,  as 
follows:  J.  N.  Pendegast,  F.  S.  Freeman,  R.  L.  Beamer,  C.  Nelson, 
U.  Shellhammer,  Edward  Bynum,  Jesse  Clark,  G.  O.  Burnett,  W.  W. 
Dewitt,  A.  C.  Hawkins,  B.  S.  Young,  John  Hendley,  J.  F.  Thomp- 
son, J.  P.  Rose,  AY  O.  Miller,  A.  M.  Crow,  T.  H.  Lane.  Silas  March, 
J.  P.  Blanks,  S.  K.  Hallum  and  W.  W.  Pendegast. 


142  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

On  October  17,  1868,  on  motion,  J.  N.  Pendegast  was  appointed 
to  make  application  for  a  charter  to  the  state  board.  June  3,  1869, 
the  minutes  show  that,  Hesperian  College,  having  been  incorpo- 
rated, it  was  ordered  that  the  first  meeting  of  the  new  board  be 
held  at  the  college  building  on  Monday,  August  23,  1869,  and  the 
secretary  directed  to  notify  the  trustees. 

On  August  23,  1869,  J.  N.  Pendegast  was  elected  president; 

B.  C.  Lawson,  secretary,  and  the  faculty  elected  was  composed  of 
J.  M.  Martin,  J.  L.  Simpson,  G.  N.  Freeman,  Mrs.  C.  L.  Cross, 
William  Walle,  and  Mrs.  J.  E.  Dixon,  for  the  school  year  of 
1869-70. 

On  March  15,  1872,  a  committee  composed  of  J.  L.  Simpson,  B. 

C.  Lawson  and  R.  W.  Dewitt,  was  appointed  to  consider  the  pro- 
priety of  inaugurating  a  Bible  department  in  Hesperian  College, 
and  a  committee  consisting  of  C.  Nelson,  U.  Shellhammer  and 
Jesse  Welch  appointed  to  consider  the  question  of  raising  an  en- 
dowment fund  for  Hesperian  College.  These  committees  reported 
May  8,  1872.  On  endowment,  the  report  in  substance  is  that  the 
endowment  of  the  college  is  an  indispensable  necessity  to  her  future 
prosperity;  that  the  sum  of  $25,000  be  the  minimum  subscribed  to 
make  the  subscription  binding ;  that  the  subscriptions  be  paid  in  five 
equal  installments,  the  first  to  be  due  when  the  sum  of  $25,000 
shall  have  been  subscribed,  and  the  other  installments  to  be  due 
within  one,  two,  three,  and  four  years  thereafter,  with  interest  an- 
nually at  the  rate  of  ten  per  cent.  The  committee  on  Bible  depart- 
ment reported  in  substance  that  the  cause  of  Christ  requires  the 
establishment  of  a  school  for  the  dissemination  of  the  knowledge  of 
the  sacred  scriptures  amongst  the  young,  and  especially  for  the 
benefit  of  those  who  propose  to  preach  the  gospel,  and  recom- 
mended the  inauguration  of  such  a  school  or  department  of  in- 
struction in  Hesperian  College,  provided  that  a  sufficient  sum  can 
be  raised  to  endow  a  chair  of  sacred  literature. 

Elder  J.  N.  Pendegast  was  chosen  president  of  the  college  and 
professor  sacred  literature  on  July  26,  1872. 

On  December  2,  1872,  on  motion,  the  plan  for  raising  the  en- 
dowment fund  for  the  college  passed  May  8,  1872,  was  annulled, 
and  the  minimum  sum  to  be  raised  by  subscription  fixed  at  $10,000. 

About  1887  the  trustees  of  Hesperian  College  decided  to  sell 
the  original  site  and  building  to  Gibson  and  Briggs  for  $20,000. 
The  college  was  next  located  on  the  present  site  of  the  Woodland 
High  school.    Nine  years  slipped  quickly  by. 

The  trustees  of  Hesperian  College  met  in  Beamers'  Hall,  August 
21,  1896,  with  the  following  members  present:  C.  W.  Bush,  J.  D. 
Lawson,  F.  S.  Freeman,  C.  G.  Day,  C.  W.  Thomas,  John  R.  Briggs, 
U.  Shellhammer,  A.  M.  Elston,  J.  J.  Stephens,  W.  Y.  Browning, 
W.  A.  Gardner,  C.  Nelson,  W.  B.  Gibson  and  J.  W.  Bandv.    C.  W. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  143 

Bush  was  elected  chairman  and  J.  D.  Lawson,  secretary.  The  pur- 
pose of  the  meeting  was  to  hear  the  report  of.  the  committee  on 
the  matter  of  transferring  the  property  and  endowment  fund  of 
Hesperian  College  to  the  Berkeley  Bible  Seminary.  C.  W.  Thomas 
made  a  verbal  report  in  behalf  of  himself  and  W.  A.  Gardner, 
showing  how  a  legal  transfer  could  be  made.  0.  W.  Bush  followed 
with  a  written  minority  report.  C.  W.  Thomas  made  a  motion  that 
was  at  first  defeated,  then  reconsidered  and  carried  by  unanimous 
vote.  His  motion  was  that  all  the  money,  property  and  franchise  of 
Hesperian  College  be  transferred  to  the  Berkeley  Bible  Seminary 
on  condition  that  said  Berkeley  Bible  Seminary  pay  the  indebted- 
ness of  Hesperian  College  and  transfer  the  land  with  college  build- 
ing and  stable  to  the  Woodland  High  School  District,  paying  all 
expenses  for  transfer  and  in  addition  thereto  pay  to  the  Christian 
Church  the  sum  of  $5626.75. 

Mr.  Thomas  then  moved  that  the  trustees  proceed  to  pay  the 
debts  of  the  corporation  and  make  application  for  dissolution.  The 
motion  was  adopted  by  unanimous  vote. 

A  motion  was  made  and  carried  authorizing  the  executive 
committee  to  transfer  the  chemical  apparatus  to  the  high  school 
and  the  library  to  the  Public  Library  and  to  dispose  of  all  other 
personal  property  belonging  to  the  college. 

On  August  22,  1896,  the  trustees  of  Hesperian  College  conveyed 
to  the  trustees  of  the  Berkeley  Bible  Seminary  the  real  property 
of  the  college,  an  endowment  fund  of  $21,170.23,  and  certain  rights, 
privileges  and  franchises. 

The  Berkeley  Bible  Seminary  agreed  to  accept  the  conveyance 
of  the  property,  endowment,  rights,  etc.,  and  agreed  to  pay  to 
the  Christian  Church  of  Woodland,  California,  an  amount  sufficient 
to  pay  off  a  mortgage  indebtedness  of  $5626.76  and  to  convey  the 
real  property  known  as  the  Hesperian  College  property,  including 
college  building,  barn,  and  lot  on  which  barn  is  located  to  the  Wood- 
land High  School  for  high  school  purposes. 

On  February  12,  1897,  the  property  was  deeded  to  the  Wood- 
land School  District  with  the  following  proviso:  "Provided  that 
said  property  shall  be  used  for  high  school  educational  purposes  and 
none  other,  that  if  said  property  should  at  any  time  cease  to  lie 
used  for  high  school  educational  purposes  the  same  shall  revert 
to  the  Berkeley  Bible  Seminary  and  become  the  property  of  this 
corporation." 

During  the  many  years  that  Hesperian  College  was  in  existence 
it  was  recognized  as  one  of  the  best  educational  institutions  in 
California.  It  numbered  among  its  instructors  some  of  the  finest 
educators  of  the  state.  Its  presidents  were:  O.  L.  Mathews,  H.  M. 
Atkenson,  J.  W.  Anderson,  J.  M.  Martin,  J.  N.  Pendegast,  B.  H. 
Smith  and  A.  M.  Elston. 


144  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


YOLO    COUNTY    HIGH    SCHOOL    DISTRICTS 

Winters  Joint' Union  High  School  was  established  in  1892.  It 
comprises  Apricot,  Buckeye  and  Winters  Districts  in  Yolo  County 
and  Olive  and  Wolfskill  Districts  in  Solano  County.  The  enrollment 
for  the  year  ending  June  30,  1912,  was  seventy-three  pupils.  The 
members  of  the  high  school  board  are  Fred  W.  Wilson,  president; 
August  Brinck,  James  R.  Briggs,  C.  M.  Cooper  and  William  Baker. 
The  members  of  the  faculty  for  the  year  1912  are  Louise  Mayne, 
principal;  Mary  Stewart,  Matilda  Hayes,  Bessie  Mayne  and  Mrs. 
Kate  J.  Stirring. 

Esparto  Union  High  School  was  established  in  1892.  The  dis- 
tricts forming  it  are  Cadenasso,  Canon,  Cottonwood,  Esparto,  Fair- 
view,  Gordon,  Guinda,  Madison,  Monday,  Mountain,  Mt.  Pleasant, 
Kumsey,  Summit  and  Willow  Spring.  The  number  of  students 
enrolled  in  1912  was  forty-two.  The  members  of  the  high  school 
board  are  J.  L.  Stephens,  president;  R.  0.  Armstrong,  H.  B.  John- 
son, E.  J.  Mast  and  Edward  Morrin.  The  members  of  the  faculty 
for  the  year  1912  are  Mrs.  H.  Josephine  Shute,  Lillian  Secrest, 
Pearl  Heath  and  Ray  T.  Howes. 

The  date  of  the  establishment  of  the  Woodland  High  School 
was  April  23,  1895.  It  was  located  within  the  corporate  limits  of  the 
city  of  Woodland. 

The  city  board  of  education  at  that  time  had  for  its  members 
C.  I.  Nelson,  N.  M.  Weaver,  F.  E.  Baker,  E.  T.  Clowe  and  Herbert 
Coil.  E.  H.  Henderson  was  the  first  principal,  with  Mrs.  L.  D.  Law- 
head  and  J.  D.  Burks  as  assistants.  The  first  year  the  school  was 
held  in  three  rooms  in  the  Walnut  Street  Grammar  School  building. 
The  next  year  (1896)  the  trustees  of  Hesperian  College  permitted 
the  old  college  building  to  be  used  by  the  high  school.  The  mem- 
bers of  the  faculty  for  the  term  commencing  August  24,  1896,  were 
E.  H.  Henderson,  principal,  with  Mrs.  L.  D.  Lawhead  and  William 
Hyman  as  assistants. 

The  steady  increase  of  students  from  1896  till  there  were  one 
hundred  ninety-one  in  1912  made  it  necessary  to  vote  bonds  for  a 
new  building.  A  bond  election  was  held  December  18,  1911.  It 
carried  by  more  than  two-thirds  majority.  Nine  hundred  seventy- 
three  votes  were  cast.  Of  this  number  eight  hundred  fourteen  votes 
were  in  favor  of  the  bonds.  The  bonds  issued  were  for  $90,000, 
payable  in  forty  years,  with  interest  at  the  rate  of  five  per  cent  per 
annum.  The  bonds  were  purchased  by  the  Bank  of  Yolo.  A  mag- 
nificent new  building,  designed  by  W.  H.  Weeks  of  San  Francisco, 
is  in  course  of  construction. 

The  members  of  the  Woodland  Board  of  Education  are  J. 
Reith,  Jr.,  president;  F.  C.  Emert,  J.  L.  Harlan,  R.  J.  Gibson  and 
Charles  Thomas,  Jr. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  145 

The  members  of  the  faculty  are  William  M.  Hyman,  principal; 
Mrs.  L.  D.  Lawhead,  vice-principal;  Lola  J.  Simpson,  Oda  M.  Smith, 
Olive  Montgomery,  Ella  Tuttle,  Veta  Hurst,  G.  T.  Kern  and  Arthur 
Thomas. 

UNIVERSITY   FARM 

The  University  Farm  at  Davis  was  established  according  to 
an  act  of  the  legislature  of  1905.  At  that  session  Hon.  Nicholas  A. 
Hawkins,  member  of  the  assembly  from  Yolo  county,  introduced 
a  bill  appropriating  $1,500  to  purchase  and  begin  the  equipment 
of  such  a  farm  and  naming  a  commission  of  five  men  to  make  the 
selection.  Out  of  scores  of  sites  offered  in  various  parts  of  the 
state  a  farm  of  780  acres  adjoining  the  town  of  Davis  was  chosen 
in  1906. 

The  first  buildings  were  erected  in  1907.  Short  courses  for 
adult  farmers  were  first  offered  in  the  fall  of  1908.  The  farm 
school  for  young  men  and  boys  was  opened  in  January,  1909,  and 
students  from  the  College  of  Agriculture  at  Berkeley  came  for 
part  of  their  four-year  course  at  the  same  time. 

The  farm  is  a  part  of  the  College  of  Agriculture  of  the  State 
University  and  its  purpose  is  to  carry  on  experiments  in  all  lines 
of  agriculture  and  to  give  instruction  in  agriculture  in  such  a 
manner  that  all  who  need  may  be  supplied.  The  farm  school  is 
open  to  boys  who  have  completed  the  grammar  school  and  offers 
a  three-year  course  touching  upon  all  phases  of  farm  life  and  work. 
The  farmers'  short  course  admits  all  persons  over  eighteen  years 
of  age  and  without  any  educational  test.  The  courses,  seven  in  all, 
are  given  each  fall  and  range  in  length  from  two  to  seven  weeks. 
In  1911  the  short  course  enrollment  was  214.  During  1911-12  the 
enrollment  in  the  farm  school  was  100.  Up  to  July  1,  1912,  about 
$450,000  have  been  expended  in  land,  buildings  and  permanent 
equipment. 


146  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

CHAPTER  XXIX 

THE  CATHOLIC  CHURCH  IN  YOLO  COUNTY 

The  earliest  pioneer  Catholic  family  of  whom  there  is  a  defi- 
nite record  moving  into  Yolo  county  and  becoming  identified  with 
Catholic  life  in  this  section,  is  Ednard  St.  Louis  and  his  wife,  Mar- 
cella  Jacks,  the  last  a  descendant  of  one  of  the  first  settlers  that 
came  with  Lord  Baltimore  in  Maryland.  The  St.  Louises  emi- 
grated from  St.  Charles  county,  near  St.  Louis,  Mo.,  and  with 
four  children,  Charles,  George,  Francis  and  Mary,  settled,  Sep- 
tember 18,  1852,  near  Knight's  Landing.     The  grandfather,  John 

B.  St.  Louis,  came  with  them,  also  Colbert  and  Charles,  brothers 
of  Eduard;  Charles  had  been  in  California  before,  fighting  under 
General  Fremont,  but  had  returned  to  Missouri.  James  St.  Louis, 
a  cousin,  who  also  accompanied  them,  is  still  living  in  Knight's 
Landing.  After  a  year,  Eduard  St.  Louis  and  his  wife  settled  on 
lands  near  Cacheville,  where  five  more  children  were  born  to  them: 
Virginia,  Marcella,  Margareth,  Sylvia  and  Martha.  As  Sacramento 
and  Marysville  were  the  only  places  in  the  valley  having  resident 
priests,  the  St.  Louises  would  occasionally  attend  divine  service  in 
Sacramento,  but  in  1858  a  priest  from  Sacramento  came  to  Knight's 
Landing,  gathered  in  the  dispersed  Catholics,  and  held  the  first 
Catholic  service  in  Yolo  county  at  John  O'Keefe's  house  in 
Knight's  Landing.  John  O'Keefe  (the  father  of  Dan,  John  and 
Mary,  still  living)  drove  a  regular  stage  from  Knight's  Landing  to 
Sacramento. 

When  "Woodland  began  to  build  up,  Rev.  P.  Kelly  came  from 
Sacramento  and  held  the  first  divine  service  in  the  house  of  Peter 
Fitzgerald,  afterwards  in  the  Good  Templars'  hall  and  in  the  court- 
house.    At  the  divine  service,  held  April   12,   1869,   he  appointed 

C.  D.  Morin,  John  Schuerle,  Anton  Miller  and  Charles  E.  St.  Louis 
a  church  committee  to  secure  a  suitable  location  for  a  Catholic 
church  in  Woodland.  Charles  E.  St.  Louis  was  chosen  president 
and  treasurer  and  John  Schuerle  secretary.  June  12  of  the  same 
year  the  committee  bought  two  lots,  120x90  feet,  on  Main  street, 
between  Elm  street  and  the  present  church  building  for  $420  from 
Edwin  Giddings.  The  ground  was  deeded  as  church  property,  to 
Archbishop  Joseph  Sadoc  Alemany.  The  drawing  of  plans  and 
specifications  for  a  brick  building  50x70  feet  and  the  superintend- 
ence of  the  structure  were  awarded  to  the  architect  Gustave  Cox 
for  $175,  the  cost  of  the  building  not  to  exceed  $7,000.  The  brick- 
work was  let  October  9  to  L.  F.  Craft  for  $15.50  per  thousand, 
wall  count,  work  to  begin  in  two  days;  mill  and  carpenter  work 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  147 

was  let  for  $1,800.  Sunday,  November  7,  1869,  was  set  for  the 
solemn  laying  of  the  cornerstone.  The  new  church  was  dedicated 
by  the  Very  Rev.  Jacob  Croke,  vicar  general  of  the  diocese,  on  the 
first  Sunday  of  October,  1870,  and  as  that  day  is  Rosary  Sunday 
in  the  Catholic  almanac,  the  church  was  dedicated  to  the  Holy 
Rosary.  In  the  winter  following  the  foundation  of  the  church  gave 
way,  especially  on  the  rainy  side,  the  front  and  steeple  settled  and 
cracked  and  the  building  was  declared  unsafe.  The  walls  were 
bolted  together  and  divine  services  held  in  it  for  a  while,  until  a 
new  church  could  be  built. 

In  1870  Woodland  had  the  first  priest  residing  in  Yolo  county, 
in  the  person  of  Rev.  Lawrence  Scanlan,  now  Bishop  of  Salt  Lake 
diocese.  In  the  beginning  of  1871  he  was  succeeded  by  the  Rev. 
Dominic  Spellman,  whom  Rev.  P.  Gallagher  succeeded  in  June, 
1872.  March  17,  1874,  Rev.  P.  Gallagher  "bought  the  three  lots  on 
the  corner  of  Main  and  Walnut  streets,  180  feet  fronting  Main 
and  190  feet  deep  on  Walnut,  the  ground  on  which  the  present 
Catholic  church  property  is  built.  The  brick  church  had  been  taken 
down  and  the  lots  sold.  May  11,  1873,  Archbishop  Joseph  S. 
Alemany,  to  whose  jurisdiction  Yolo  county  belonged,  paid  Wood- 
land his  first  visit  and  confirmed  a  large  class  in  the  old  Washing- 
ton hall  between  Elm  and  College  streets.  He  paid  four  more  offi- 
cial, fatherly  visits,  October  1,  1875;  August  18,  1878;  June  20,  1881, 
and  October  22,  1883.  His  successor,  Archbishop  P.  Riordan,  vis- 
ited it  May  4,  1886. 

Rev.  P.  Gallagher  left  in  June,  1874,  and  was  succeeded  by 
Rev.  P.  Kaiser,  a  German  priest,  formerly  pastor  of  St.  Boniface 
church,  San  Francisco.  He  built  the  present  frame  church,  30x60 
feet,  with  the  addition  of  rooms  in  the  rear  for  his  residence.  He 
built  also  the  Catholic  church  in  Davisville  and  secured,  through 
James  St.  Louis,  the  purchase  of  Knight's  Landing  school  house  and 
lot,  which  he  arranged  for  a  church.  These  three  churches,  built 
by  him,  remained  the  only  ones  in  the  county  to  serve  the  Cath- 
olics for  'over  thirty  years,  until  under  the  Rev.  P.  Greelv, 
the  two  churches  in  Winters  and  Blacks  were  built  in  addition. 
The  divine  service  is  given  during  this  time  as  follows:  First  and 
third  Sunday  of  the  month  in  Woodland,  second  Sunday  in  Davis- 
ville, the  fourth  Sundav  in  Knight's  Landing  and  the  fifth  in  Knox- 
ville. 

The  Rev.  P.  Kaiser,  being  on  the  sick  list  in  the  summer  of  1876, 
the  Rev.  Luciana  Osuna,  a  Spanish  missionary,  was  pastor  in 
Woodland  until  October,  when  Rev.  P.  Kaiser  returned  to  his  charge. 
In  the  beginning  of  1877  Rev.  P.  Kaiser  was  succeeded  by  the  Rev. 
J.  Largan  as  pastor,  remaining  until  June,  1878,  when  Rev.  P. 
Ward  followed  him.    In  September  of  the  same  year  Rev.  John  Nil- 


148  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

gent  succeeded  him  and  in  September,  1879,  Rev.  C.  O'Connor  fol- 
lowed. In  the  beginning  of  1883  Rev.  John  McGinty  arrived.  Being 
an  active  young  priest,  he  set  to  work  at  once  to  secure  the  present 
Catholic  cemetery  and  Archbishop  Joseph  S.  Alemany  dedicated  it 
October  22  of  that  year  to  the  honor  of  his  patron — St.  Joseph. 
Then  Rev.  McGinty  moved  the  building  of  a  Catholic  parish  school. 
In  September  he  had  a  successful  ladies'  fair,  which  netted  $3,237 
for  this  purpose.  May  25,  1884,  he  secured  five  acres  of  ground  on 
Main  street  for  $2,500  and  built  "Holy  Rosary  Academy."  Bryant 
Clinch  was  the  architect  and  S.  Caldwell  the  contractor.  From  a 
second  ladies'  fair  in  1884,  the  missions  assisting,  he  cleared  $4,575 
and  collected  in  the  whole  county  for  the  building.  He  finished  the 
building  in  1885  and  secured  for  the  institution  the  service  of  the 
Holy  Cross  sisters,  whose  motherhouse  is  in  Notre  Dame,  Ind.,  and 
who  arrived  in  Woodland,  July  21,  1886.  These  sisters  have  raised 
a  successful  young  ladies'  academy  which  enjoys  a  high  reputation 
and  is  well  attended  by  pupils  from  abroad. 

Upon  the  formation  of  the  new  diocese  of  Sacramento,  in  May, 
1886,  when  Yolo  county  was  taken  from  the  jurisdiction  of  San 
Francisco  and  added  to  Sacramento,  Rev.  J.  McGinty  left  Woodland 
for  new  fields  in  San  Francisco  and  was  succeeded  by  Rev.  M.  Cole- 
man and  in  January,  1880,  by  Rev.  James  Hynes,  who  built  the 
present  parish  house  at  a  cost  of  $4,500.  An  assistant  priest  was 
sent  to  Yolo  county  in  1890,  the  first  one  being  Rev.  M.  Walsh, 
others  succeeding  him.  Rt.  Rev.  P.  Manogue  paid  Woodland  an 
episcopal  visit  May  3,  1886,  his  successor,  Rt.  Rev.  Thomas  Grace 
the  same,  May  2,  1897,  May  24,  1903,  May  28,  1907,  and  May  22, 
1910.  Rev.  J.  Hynes  died  January  28,  1899,  beloved  and  lamented 
by  all.  His  remains  were  interred  in  the  center  of  St.  Joseph's 
cemetery.  Rev.  J.  Hunt  succeeded  the  departed,  remaining  until  Sep- 
tember, when  Rev.  P.  Greely  followed  him.  During  the  eleven  years 
of  his  pastorate,  the  last  built  the  churches  in  Winters  and  Blacks, 
collected  and  deposited  in  the  banks  over  $7,000  for  the  building  of  a 
new  church  in  Woodland  and  bought  the  ground  north  of  the 
church  180x190  feet  on  the  corner  of  Court  and  Walnut.  On  the 
feast  of  St.  Monica,  May  4,  1911,  he  moved  to  St.  Monica,  Willows. 
as  pastor,  and  the  same  day  Rev.  M.  Wallrath  from  Colusa  began 
his  pastorate  in  Woodland.  In  November  he  moved  the  old  church 
to  the  lot  north,  to  clear  the  place  for  a  new  church  on  Main  street. 
March  1.  1912,  he  turned  the  first  shovel  for  its  foundation.  Fidele 
( !osta,  an  Italian  artisan,  having  finished  the  new  church  in  Auburn, 
Cal.,  designed,  with  the  pastor,  the  plans  in  pure  gothic  style  and 
secured  the  contract  for  the  new  church,  which  is  being  built  at 
present  at  a  cost  of  $30,000.  It  is  thoroughly  modern,  being  of  re- 
inforced concrete,  with  granite  rock  faced  walls  and  steeples,  backed 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  14!) 

by  concrete  with  steel  reinforcement  and  throughout  concrete  but- 
tresses and  mouldings,  the  whole  strengthened  with  a  riveted  steel 
frame.  Rt.  Rev.  Thomas  Grace  laid  the  foundation  stone  for  the 
church  with  great  solemnity  April  28,  1912. 

The  Holy  Cross  sisters  built  the  east  wing  to  their  academy  in 
1907  and  are  building  at  present  (1912)  another  large  addition  in 
the  rear.  Holy  Rosary  parish,  Woodland,  is  now  ready  for  a  divis- 
ion, forming  a  second  parish  in  Yolo  county  of  the  missions  Win- 
ters, Davis,  Madison  and  Guinda,  with  Winters  as  the  pastor's  resi- 
dence. The  number  of  Catholics  in  the  county  is  about  one  thou- 
sand, with  seven  churches,  and  the  present  schedule  of  divine  ser- 
vice is  as  follows :  In  Woodland  two  masses  on  all  Sundays  and  all 
holy  days  of  obligation  at  8  and  10 :30,  evening  service  at  7 :30,  daily 
mass  at  7:30;  in  the  academy  daily  communion  and  mass  daily,  as 
nearly  as  possible ;  in  Davis,  mass  on  the  second  and  fourth  Sunday 
of  every  month  at  11,  benediction  in  the  evening  at  7  and  mass  the 
following  Monday ;  in  Broderick,  mass  on  the  same  Sundays  at  8 :45 
in  the  town  hall ;  in  Winters,  mass  on  the  third  Sunday  of  every 
month  at  9,  evening  devotion  at  7,  and  mass  the  following  Monday 
morning;  in  Madison,  mass  on  the  same  Sunday  at  11:30  and  on  the 
fifth  Saturday  at  9 ;  in  Blacks,  mass  on  the  first  Sunday  of  all  the 
even  number  months  at  11 :30 ;  evening  devotion  at  7  and  mass  the 
following  Monday;  in  Knight's  Landing  the  same  on  the  first  Sun- 
days of  all  the  uneven  numbered  months  and  the  following  Monday ; 
in  Blacks,  also  on  the  first  Sundays  of  all  the  uneven  months  and  on 
the  third  Saturdays  at  9;  and  in  Knight's  Landing  also  on  the  first 
Sunday  of  all  the  even  months  and  the  fourth  Saturdays  at  9;  in 
Guinda,  on  the  second  Saturday  of  the  month  at  9  and  every  fifth 
Sunday  at  10. 

A  few  facts  are  added  about  the  Catholic  missions  in  Yolo 
county,  dependents  of  Holy  Rosary  parish. 

The  first  divine  service  at  Davisville  was  held  in  1869  by  ;i 
priest  from  Sacramento  in  the  parlor  of  Maurice  Reardon's  hotel. 
After  this,  occasional  service  was  held  in  the  school-house.  The 
Catholics  built  their  present  church  in  1875  and  Archbishop  Joseph 
S.  Alemany  dedicated  it  to  the  honor  of  St.  James  June  10,  1881, 
and  confirmed  a  number  of  candidates.  Mrs.  Chiles  donated  an  acre 
of  her  land  for  a  cemetery. 

The  church  in  Knight's  Landing,  as  no  record  nor  remembrance 
could  be  discovered  of  its  dedication,  was  dedicated  to  the  honor  of 
St.  Paul  by  Rev.  M.  Wallrath  December  26,  1911,  after  a  bell  and 
bell-tower  had  been  put  up  and  the  building  been  repaired. 

The  first  service  in  the  Winters  missions  was  held  by  Rev. 
Thomas  Gibney  from  Sacramento  in  the  house  of  the  widow  of 
Thomas  Lynch  near  the  present  Norton  railroad  station,  when  the 


150  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

priest  came  on  a  sick  call.  The  town  of  Winters  was  then  not  yet 
begun  and  Buckeye  was  the  postoffice  center.  In  August,  1873,  a 
priest  from  Napa  held  divine  service  in  the  house  of  James  Mc- 
Mahon  of  the  neighborhood.  During  1874  and  1875  Rev.  P.  Ward 
from  Dixon  held  divine  service  in  the  same  house  and  also  in  Union 
school  between  Madison  and  Winters.  In  1877  Rev.  Powers  held 
divine  service  in  the  house  of  J.  Devilbis  west  of  Winters.  When 
Winters  built  up,  divine  service  was  held  there  occasionally  by  the 
resident  priests  from  Woodland  in  Seaman's  hall  and  in  private 
houses.  James  Foy  left  in  his  will  two  lots  for  the  building  of  a 
Catholic  church  in  Winters.  These  were  sold  and  a  more  preferable 
location  was  bought  on  Main  street.  Rev.  P.  Greely  let  the  con- 
tract in  1905  for  the  present  church  to  A.  Ritchie  of  Winters,  and 
regular  monthly  service  was  held  in  the  church.  In  1911  Rev.  M. 
Wallrath  wired  the  church,  put  up  a  bell  and  bought  two  adjacent 
lots  with  the  view  for  the  residence  of  a  pastor.  October  29  of  that 
year  Rt.  Rev.  Thomas  Grace  dedicated  the  church  to  the  honor  of 
St.  Anthony  and  administered  holy  confirmation  and  Rev.  E.  Mol- 
loy,  a  Redemptorist  religieux,  opeued  a  week's  mission. 

Madison  was  made  a  mission  and  divine  service  held  monthly 
in  its  school-house  after  the  church  in  Winters  was  finished  and  the 
regular  monthly  service,  which  Rev.  J.  McGinty  began  in  the  Union 
school-house  in  1884  and  which  the  Woodland  pastors  had  continued 
regularly,  was  abandoned.  Madison  has  now  a  church  building 
which  was  finished  last  September  and  is  intended  to  be  dedicated 
next  May. 

The  Catholics  in  and  around  Blacks  enjoyed  for  long  years  reg- 
ular monthly  service  in  the  school-bouse  south  of  town  by  the  priests 
from  Woodland,  duplicating  the  same  Sunday  in  Knight's  Landing 
and  Blacks.  In  1906  they  secured,  under  Rev.  P.  Greely,  a  suitable 
location  in  the  town  and  built  a  church,  which  was  dedicated  by  Rt. 
Rev.  Thomas  Grace  May  2,  1909,  to  the  honor  of  St.  Agnes,  in  due 
regard  for  Mrs.  Agnes  Bemmerly,  who  had  donated  nearly  the 
whole  cost  of  lot  and  building;  Mrs.  Helen  Walker  donated  almost 
all  of  the  furniture.  A  grand  barbecue  was  held  on  that  day  and 
the  solemnity  of  the  occasion  is  still  remembered. 

The  Guinda  mission  was  opened  under  Rev.  P.  Greely  in  1907. 
In  1912  a  church  was  built  and  the  Rt.  Rev.  Thomas  Grace  sol- 
emnly dedicated  it  to  the  Annunciation,  April  28,  the  same  year. 

Broderick,  or  West  Sacramento,  as  they  wish  to  call  it,  is  a 
new  mission  opened  by  Rev.  M.  Wallrath  and  the  many  Catholics 
there  are  awaiting  the  building  of  a  church  in  the  near  future,  as 
the  town  and  country  around  are  fast  developing. 

HOLY    ROSARY    ACADEMY 

In   its   location   the   Holy   Rosary  Academy   has   been    excep- 


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HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  151 

tionally  fortunate  and  bears  enduring  testimony  concerning  the 
wisdom  of  its  founders.  The  city  of  Woodland,  where  the  school 
was  established  during  the  '80s,  ranks  among  the  most  beautiful 
as  well  as  the  most  healthful  in  all  of  Northern  California,  thus 
ensuring  to  students  an  environment  conducive  alike  to  health  and 
to  a  love  of  nature.  It  also  appears  from  the  general  air  of  pros- 
perity that  the  people  of  Woodland  are  winning  success  in  busi- 
ness and  professional  affairs,  and  it  is  further  evident  that  the 
surrounding  agriculturists  are  exceptionally  fortunate  in  the  culti- 
vation of  their  properties.  In  the  midst  of  such  surroundings 
indicative  of  energy  and  material  development  the  academy  was 
founded  to  give  to  the  young  people  of  the  community  such  oppor- 
tunities as  the  increasing  means  of  their  parents  rendered  possible, 
besides  offering  to  the  young  from  other  points  all  the  healthful  and 
charming  environments  favorable  to  the  growth  of  the  highest 
powers  of  the  mind.  It  has  been  well  said  that  "the  element  that 
stamps  the  progress  of  an  age  is  undoubtedly  education,  since 
upon  the  tone  and  quality  of  a  nation's  education  largely  depend 
its  welfare  and  moral  status,  hence  its  progress." 

Few  states  in  the  Union  can  boast  of  educational  facilities  equal 
to  those  offered  by  California.  The  number  and  superiority  of  its 
institutions  of  learning,  both  public  and  private,  are  no  small 
factor  in  its  remarkable  development.  Yolo  county  may  with 
justice  be  proud  of  its  record  in  educational  progress  and  it  pos- 
sesses in  Holy  Rosary  Academy  one  of  the  best-equipped  private 
schools  on  the  coast.  The  roots  of  the  moral  welfare  as  well  as 
those  of  true  culture  attain  their  perfected  growth  only  in  an 
environment  that  tends  to  make  one  feel  that  to  be  true  and  good 
is  most  desirable.  Few  institutions  have  more  suitable  surround- 
ings than  those  of  the  Holy  Rosary  on  West  Main  street  in  Wood- 
land. While  within  easy  reach  of  both  San  Francisco  and  Sacra- 
mento it  is  yet  sufficiently  removed  from  the  turmoil  of  vast  com- 
mercial enterprises  to  ensure  the  quiet  requisite  for  mental  appli- 
cation. 

The  academy  is  a  branch  of  the  noted  St.  Mary's  Academy 
and  St.  Mary's  College  at  Notre  Dame,  Ind.,  whose  renown  as 
a  center  of  culture  is  unrivaled.  Established  as  early  as  1884  by 
Rev.  Father  McGinty,  now  of  the  Holy  Cross  Church  in  San  Fran- 
cisco, the  main  building  was  erected  during  that  year,  but  the 
academy  was  not  opened  by  the  Sisters  until  August  of  1886,  anil 
on  the  18th  of  June,  1888,  it  was  incorporated  as  St.  Mary's  of 
Holy  Rosary  Academy.  The  work  was  under  the  supervision  of 
Sister  M.  Lucretia,  a  daughter  of  the  late  Judge  Fuller  of  Marys- 
ville,  and  prospered  exceedingly  under  her  care  from  the  beginning 
until  1895,  when  Sister  M.  Barbara  came  to  the  head  of  the  institu- 


152  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

tion,  and  she  in  turn  was  succeeded  by  the  present  superior,  Sister 
M.  Bertilde,  a  graduate  of  the  Mother  House  of  St.  Mary's  Acad- 
emy at  Notre  Dame,  Ind.,  and  after  1890  a  teacher  at  the  Holy 
Rosary  Academy,  of  which  she  has  been  the  head  since  August 
of  1905. 

The  building  is  an  imposing  structure  three  stories  high,  sur- 
rounded by  large  grounds  artistically  laid  out  and  beautifully 
kept,  with  tennis  court,  basket-ball  grounds  and  all  other  facilities 
for  the  recreation  of  the  students.  During  1906  a  wing-,  66x30, 
was  added  and  in  1912  another  building,  an  auditorium,  90x48,  gave 
completeness  to  the  school.  Accommodations  are  afforded  for  the 
primary,  preparatory  and  academic  departments,  and  in  the 
last-named  there  have  been  graduates  every  year  since  1889.  The 
course  of  studies  embraces  all  the  requisites  of  a  solid  and  refined 
education  based  on  Christian  principles.  It  is  intended  to  train 
the  heart  as  well  as  the  mind,  to  form  women  who  shall  grace 
society  by  their  accomplishments  and  edify  all  around  them  by 
their  virtues  and  devotion  to  duty.  The  best  known  methods  are 
followed  and  standard  books  are  used  for  text  and  reference.  A 
spirit  of  emulation  is  promoted  by  competitions,  examinations, 
monthly  reports,  prizes  and  academic  diplomas. 

The  special  course  in  English  embraces  at  least  two  years 
and  the  business  course  also  requires  two  years  and  must  be  pre- 
ceded by  a  thorough  knowledge  of  the  common  branches  of  study. 
Logic,  ethics  and  psychology  with  co-ordinate  reading  form  an 
essential  part  of  the  academic  curriculum.  The  study  of  French 
and  German  is  considered  important,  while  Latin  is  obligatory 
in  the  academic  course.  For  Roman  Catholic  students  the  study 
of  religion  takes  precedence  over  all  other  branches.  The  training 
in  church  history,  Christian  doctrine  and  the  New  Testament  is 
thorough.  Close  attention  is  given  to  mathematics,  while  for 
natural  science  the  academy  possesses  laboratories  equipped  with 
the  necessary  apparatus  to  illustrate  the  truths  of  chemistry  and 
physics.  The  course  in  English  embraces  literature,  history,  bi- 
ography and  critical  study  of  the  different  forms  of  prose  and 
poetry,  the  first  two  years  being  devoted  to  American  and  English 
authors  and  the  last  two  years  to  general  literature.  Frequent 
recitals  are  incentives  to  the  study  of  elocution  and  dramatic 
art,  and  a  medal  is  conferred  on  those  who  complete  the  course  in 
the  art  of  expression.  A  large  new  gymnasium  recently  con- 
structed has  given  impetus  to  the  work  of  the  physical  culture 
classes. 

The  studio  is  a  bee-hive  of  industry  and  skill,  where  the  stu- 
dents take  the  regular  course  in  perspective  drawing  and  work 
in  charcoal  crayon,  painting  in  pastel,  oil  and  water  colors,  and 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  153 

decorative  china  receives  special  attention.  At  commencement  the 
work  of  the  year  appears  on  exhibition,  with  an  exhibit  embracing 
sketches  from  nature,  studies  from  still  life  and  objects,  decorative 
china;  also  specimens  of  ornamental  needlework,  dainty  and  elab- 
orate according  to  the  use  intended,  and  illuminated  leather.  Under 
talented  instructors  the  students  acquire  those  artistic  accomplish- 
ments which  contribute  so  materially  to  home  adornment.  The 
conservatory  of  music  is  modeled  after  the  best  in  the  land.  Bril- 
liancy of  style,  technical  skill  and  comprehensive  interpretation 
characterize  the  efforts  of  the  students  in  instrumental  music; 
while  for  delicacy  of  shading  and  artistic  finish  their  vocal  music 
is  declared  by  competent  judges  to  be  unsurpassed.  The  Virgil- 
Clavier  method,  which  is  in  such  favor  in  the  east,  has  contributed 
its  share  toward  the  musical  reputation  which  the  academy  enjoys. 
The  graduate  gold  medal  and  diploma  of  the  conservatory  are 
bestowed  only  upon  those  who  have  completed  the  entire  course. 
Before  graduating  each  candidate  is  required  to  give  publicly  a 
program  of  about  ten  numbers.  In  the  post-graduate  course,  which 
embraces  a  term  of  two  years,  a  special  line  of  advanced  work  is 
offered  those  who  wish  to  go  beyond  the  limits  of  the  amateur 
in  the  tone  world.  The  course  includes  the  best  training  along 
lines  of  artistic  excellence  in  technique  and  interpretation  and 
demands  more  than  mere  skill  and  ordinary  attainments  on  the 
part  of  the  student.  The  Cecelian  and  Choral  clubs,  composed  of 
advanced  students  of  the  music  department,  give  monthly  programs. 

A  notable  feature  of  the  academy  is  the  happy  blending  of 
the  pleasurable  and  the  useful.  Aside  from  the  regular  recre- 
ations there  are  entertainments  judiciously  distributed  among  the 
various  classes.  The  primary  grades  have  charge  of  the  Hal- 
lowe'en program  which  is  always  amusing  and  interesting.  The 
Japanese  fete  is  in  charge  of  the  graduates  as  hostesses.  On  St. 
Cecelia's  day  the  members  of  the  Cecelian  club  give  an  elaborate 
musical  program.  Thanksgiving  is  always  fittingly  celebrated,  while 
before  the  students  leave  for  the  holidays  a  festival  is  given  in 
honor  of  Christmas,  on  one  such  occasion  Holy  Night  having  been 
presented  by  the  elocution  and  physical  culture  classes.  St.  Valen- 
tine's day  is  always  observed,  and  in  addition  there  are  musicales, 
lawn  fetes  and  piano  recitals  at  other  periods,  not  the  least  of  the 
celebrations  being  on  "Washington's  birthday,  St.  Patrick's  day 
and  Holy  Rosary  fete  day. 

The  silver  jubilee  of  Holy  Rosary  Academy  met  with  appro- 
priate recognition  and  called  forth  many  testimonies  as  to  the 
value  of  the  school  in  the  community.  The  efforts  and  achieve- 
ments of  the  quarter  of  a  century  merited  and  received  appreciative 
recognition.      Congratulations   were    showered   upon   the    academy 


154  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

and  its  devoted  community  on  the  occasion  of  this  auspicious 
anniversary,  but  even  greater  cause  for  congratulations  exists  for 
the  diocese  in  its  possession  of  such  an  institution  and  for  the 
public  of  the  section,  without  regard  to  creed  lines  or  other  dif- 
ferences. The  history  of  the  academy  from  its  inception  has  been 
one  of  steady  growth  and  betterment  along  all  lines.  Notwith- 
standing the  more  or  less  unsettled  social  conditions  incident  to  a 
newly  settled  country,  and  the  sparseness  of  population  in  the 
territory  at  the  time  of  its  establishment,  the  academy  has  pros- 
pered and  developed  materially  as  well  as  in  scholastic  excellence 
and  efficiency.  It  has,  with  the  modern  spirit  of  progressive  ideas, 
characteristic  of  the  order  of  the  Holy  Cross,  kept  pace  with  the 
most  advanced  thought  and  system  of  educational  work.  The 
patrons  of  the  institution  have  benefited  by  this  closeness  of  touch 
with  the  best  methods  evolved  by  experience  in  the  field  of  school 
work  the  world  over.  Starting  with  the  completion  of  its  first  cycle 
of  constructive  effort,  Holy  Rosary  faces  an  era  of  still  greater 
development  and  usefulness.  Building  upon  the  foundations  so  sol- 
idly laid  during  the  quarter  of  a  century  just  closed,  the  institution 
seems  destined  to  attain  even  proportionately  stronger  and  speedier 
growth  during  the  immediate  future.  That  the  coming  years  may 
witness  perfect  fulfillment  of  the  promise  of  its  past  and  present 
is  the  sincere  hope  of  the  countless  hosts  of  friends  of  Holy  Rosary. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  155 


CHAPTER  XXX 

TEMPERANCE  MOVEMENT  IN  YOLO  COUNTY 

By  S a rali  A.  Huston 

Yolo  county  in  the  beginning  of  its  history  licensed  the  liquor 
traffic  for  the  sake  of  revenue.  Had  it  outlawed  the  saloons  how  dif- 
ferent would  have  been  the  career  of  many  of  the  descendants  of 
the  pioneers  who  first  located  in  Yolo  county  and  helped  make  its 
history!  It  is  pitifully  true  that  hundreds  of  young  men  who  other- 
wise would  have  made  good  citizens  fell  victims  to  King  Alcohol 
during  the  rein  of  this  great  destroyer  of  life  and  character. 

The  first  organized  effort  in  the  temperance  cause  was  made 
along  moral  suasion  lines  in  the  fall  of  1854,  when  a  division  of  the 
Sons  of  Temperance  was  instituted  at  a  school-house  close  to  and 
north  of  where  Woodland  now  stands.  As  late  as  January  20,  I860, 
a  division  was  organized  at  Knight's  Landing,  Davis,  Plainfield  and 
Washington.  This  order  was  succeeded  by  the  Independent  Order 
of  Good  Templars,  organized  at  Knight's  Landing  December  9, 
1861,  by  D.  S.  Cutter,  deputy  for  California.  Men  and  women  were 
admitted  to  membership  with  equal  privileges  in  the  order.  Many 
of  the  prohibition  workers  of  later  years  were  in  their  childhood 
members  of  the  Band  of  Hope,  the  juvenile  organization  of  the  In- 
dependent Order  of  Good  Templars. 

For  some  years  previous  to  1873  the  temperance  forces  had 
been  agitating  the  saloon  question,  and  in  the  fall  of  that  year  the 
members  of  the  I.  0.  G.  T.  determined  with  much  enthusiasm  to 
make  a  strenuous  effort  at  the  next  session  of  the  legislature  to  se- 
cure the  adoption  of  a  local  option  law.  The  local  option  bill  was 
framed  by  the  state  executive  committee  of  the  I.  0.  G.  T.  and  intro- 
duced by  the  Hon.  Wirt  W.  Pendegast,  state  senator  from  this  dis- 
trict, the  oldest  son  of  Rev.  J.  N.  Pendegast,  a  pioneer  preacher  of 
the  Christian  church  and  founder  of  Hesperian  College.  It  was  sup- 
ported by  the  petitions  of  about  thirteen  thousand  persons,  nearly 
all  voters.  The  Act  was  passed  with  little  opposition  in  the  senate 
March  11,  1874,  by  a  vote  of  twenty-eight  to  eleven;  and  on  the  14th, 
in  the  assembly,  by  a  vote  of  fifty-two  to  nineteen,  and  signed  by 
Governor  Booth. 

The  temperance  workers  were  jubilant  and  went  to  work  hop- 
ing that  success  would  crown  their  efforts.  Elections  were  held  in 
all  directions  throughout  the  state.  About  seven-ninths  of  nearly 
one  hundred  districts,  towns  and  townships  voted  no-license,  some 
by  sweeping  majorities. 

The  contest  upon  the  question  of  license  or  no-license  in  Yolo 


156  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

county  was  initiated  in  Woodland  township,  the  election  taking 
place  on  May  8,  1874.  There  were  three  hundred  and  eighty  votes 
cast,  a  majority  of  two  against  license.  On  the  15th  of  the  same 
month  Cache  Creek  and  Grafton  townships  voted  upon  the  ques- 
tion, followed  by  other  townships.  The  vote  on  saloons  in  1874  was 
as  follows: 

For  Against 

Woodland    .'. 189  191 

Cacheville 248  314 

East  Grafton  74  91 

West  Grafton  15  69 

East  Cottonwood 84  72 

West  Cottonwood 50  48 

North  Grafton 16  26 

Fairview 4  28 

North  Putah  119  94 

South  Putah  17  22 

Buckeye 81  58 

Total  897  1013 

Majority  against,  116. 

Everything  looked  favorable  for  the  suppression  of  the  liquor 
traffic  and  no  one  at  that  time  could  have  been  made  to  believe  that 
liquor  sellers  and  saloon  advocates  would  control  politics  and  defeat 
every  movement  made  by  the  temperance  people  and  that  the  Wood- 
land saloons  would  be  allowed  to  run  until  August  1,  1911,  sending 
hundreds  of  men  to  premature  graves. 

In  Contra  Costa  county  a  liquor  seller  was  fined  $50  for  con- 
tinuing his  business  contrary  to  law.  Refusing  to  pay,  he  was  ad- 
mitted to  bail  during  an  appeal  to  the  supreme  court.  Not  a  sa- 
loon in  the  state,  including  those  in  Woodland,  closed,  all  remained 
open  in  defiance  of  the  will  of  the  majority,  waiting  the  decision  of 
the  court  on  the  test  case. 

The  liquor  dealers  of  San  Francisco  made  no  secret  of  having 
raised  and  deposited  to  the  credit  of  John  B.  Felton,  their  attorney, 
the  sum  of  $40,000  payable,  provided  he  should  secure  a  decision  of 
the  supreme  court  declaring  the  local  option  law  unconstitutional. 
No  success,  no  pay.  Judge  Sanderson  defended  the  law  in  a  mas- 
terly style  before  the  supreme  court.  After  two  months'  delay  the 
majority  of  the  judges,  Wallace,  McKinstry  and  Niles,  affirmed  the 
unconstitutionality  of  the  law,  while  Crockett  and  Rhodes  dis- 
sented. 

Thus  the  people  of  California  by  the  casting  vote  of  one  man 
were  unjustly  deprived  of  the  benefits  of  a  beneficent  law.  Dollars 
won  out.     This  unlooked-for  decision  discouraged  the  workers  and 


HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  157 

very  little  aggressive  work  was  done  until  May,  1883,  when  Frances 
E.  Willard  organized  a  local  union  of  the  Women's  Temperance 
Union  in  the  Congregational  Church  in  Woodland  and  one  at  Win- 
ters. In  the  following  December  Mrs.  Mary  B.  Leavitt  organized 
the  Cacheville  W.  C.  T.  U.  These  three  unions  were,  in  April,  1887, 
organized  by  Mrs.  Euth  Armstrong  into  a  county  union.  At  later 
dates  Davis,  Knight's  Landing,  Madison,  Guinda,  Brooks  and  Rum- 
sey  were  added  to  the  Yolo  county  W.  C.  T.  U.  Mrs.  Emily  Hoppin 
was  the  first  county  president,  her  successors  being  Mrs.  Euth  Arm- 
strong, Mrs.  A.  M.  Hilliker,  Mrs.  M.  M.  Morrin,  Mrs.  S.  A.  Huston, 
Mrs.  G.  W.  Pierce  and  Mrs.  J.  E.  Scarlett. 

Soon  after  the  organization  of  the  county  Mrs.  S.  A.  Huston 
was  appointed  superintendent  of  the  press  department.  Her  first 
work  was  editing  a  W.  C.  T.  U.  column  in  the  Mail  and  Democrat 
until  she,  with  the  help  of  the  W.  C.  T.  U.  established  the  Home 
Alliance  July  1,  1891.  It  was  first  printed  by  William  Kehoe,  then 
by  E.  E.  Lee  until  October,  1894,  when  the  W.  C.  T.  U.,  through  the 
liberality  of  Mrs.  Emma  C.  Laugenour  ,who  had  been  president  of 
the  Woodland  W.  C.  T.  U.  for  many  years,  purchased  a  printing 
plant  and  opened  headquarters  in  a  building  opposite  the  city  hall. 
The  paper  has  never  missed  an  issue  and  has  been  a  great  force  in 
educating  public  sentiment  against  the  liquor  traffic.  The  publica- 
tion of  the  names  of  saloon  petitioners  proved  to  be  such  an  effec- 
tive weapon  in  the  warfare  against  the  saloons  that  to  save  them, 
saloon  sympathizing  supervisors  and  trustees  changed  the  ordi- 
nances so  that  no  petitioners  would  be  required  to  get  a  saloon 
license.  The  continuance  of  the  paper  through  all  these  years  was 
made  possible  by  the  loyal  support  given  it  by  the  members  of  the 
W.  C.  T.  U.,  the  churches  and  the  good  citizenship  of  the  county, 
and  the  patronage  of  the  business  and  professional  men  and  women 
of  Woodland. 

After  the  W.  C.  T.  U.  was  organized  there  was  no  cessation  in 
the  work  against  legalized  liquor  traffic  and  for  equal  suffrage.  The 
members  kept  "everlastingly  at  it."  Through  their  efforts  scien- 
tific temperance  instruction  in  the  public  schools  of  Yolo  county  was 
adopted  by  the  county  board  of  education,  prior  to  its  adoption  by 
the  state  legislature.  A  matron  for  the  first  time  was  appointed  at 
the  county  hospital  and  a  drinking  fountain  provided  for  the  public 
in  Woodland  and  Winters. 

A  committee  from  the  Winters  W.  C.  T.  U.  went  before  the 
trustees  and  asked  for  an  election  on  the  saloon  question.  Their  re- 
quest was  granted  and  the  election  was  held  on  April  11,  1904.  The 
result  was  thirty-three  majority  against  the  saloons  and  the  election 
of  an  anti-saloon  board  of  trustees.  This  was  the  first  notable  vic- 
tory in  the  county.     Two  years  later  Winters  voted  by  an  increased 


15S  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

majority  (forty-seven)  to  continue  the  prohibition  regime  and  again 
elected  an  anti-saloon  board  of  trustees. 

The  second  victory  was  obtaining  the  consent  of  the  supervisors 
to  submit  the  saloon  question  to  the  voters.  Petitions  presented  at 
different  times  during  the  period  of  eighteen  years  were  always  re- 
fused until  1908. 

To  Frank  B.  Edson,  of  Knight's  Landing,  belongs  the  honor 
of  being  the  first  supervisor  in  Yolo  county  to  move  that  the  saloon 
question  be  submitted  to  the  voters.  The  motion  was  seconded  by 
Supervisor  Snyder  and  passed  by  the  votes  of  Edson,  Snyder, 
Vaughn  and  Hoppin.  The  election  was  held  November  21,  1908. 
Nine  out  of  thirteen  precincts  voted  out  the  saloon.  Taking  the 
county  as  a  whole,  the  majority  against  the  saloons  was  218.  Total 
vote  for  saloons  773,  against  saloons  991.  In  November,  1910, 
Blacks  and  Dunnigan  precincts,  after  a  two  years'  trial  of  prohibi- 
tion, voted  to  remain  "dry."  The  license  fee  paid  by  each  saloon 
in  the  county  had  been  $15  per  quarter. 

The  legislature  of  1911-12  passed  a  law  prohibiting  saloons 
within  three  miles  of  the  state  farm  at  Davis.  The  law  went  into 
effect  September  1,  1911,  closing  seven  saloons,  leaving  only  one  sa- 
loon in  the  second  supervisorial  district,  on  the  Plainfield  road.  A 
petition  was  presented  to  the  board  at  the  April  meeting,  1912,  ask- 
ing that  the  application  for  a  renewal  of  the  license  for  this  saloon 
be  denied.  The  board  denied  the  petition  and  renewed  the  license. 
A  petition  for  an  election  in  the  second  supervisorial  district  was 
presented  at  the  next  meeting  of  the  board.  It  had  the  required 
number  of  names  under  the  new  local  option  law,  and  the  board 
ordered  the  election  to  be  held  on  July  2,  1912,  and  the  Plainfield 
saloon  was  voted  out  by  sixty-nine  majority,  every  precinct  in  the 
district,  including  Davis,  giving  a  majority  against  the  saloon.  The 
supervisors  on  the  day  of  the  election  renewed  the  license  for  an- 
other three  months.    The  saloon  was  closed  October  1,  1912. 

In  the  '70s  Woodland  had  forty  saloons  that  paid  a  license  fee 
of  $15  per  quarter,  under  an  ordinance  without  any  restrictions,  and 
a  red-light  district,  in  which  liquors  were  sold,  that  occupied  a  large 
part  of  the  southeast  part  of  the  city.  Murders,  suicides  and  cutting 
scrapes  occurred  at  different  times,  for  which  the  liquor  traffic  was 
directly  responsible.  Two  night  watchmen  were  employed  by  the 
city  during  the  existence  of  these  conditions.  Through  the  efforts 
of  the  W.  C.  T.  U.  the  prohibitionists  and  the  churches  this  red-light 
district  was  abolished  several  years  ago,  and  the  whole  county,  ex- 
cept the  small  river  towns,  Broderick  and  Clarksburg,  are  now  with- 
out saloons.  A  movement  has  been  started  to  secure  an  election  in 
those  places. 

The  first  restrictive  measure  against  the  Woodland  saloons  was 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  159 

the  adoption  of  a  midnight  closing  ordinance  as  an  economic  meas- 
ure to  save  $900  per  year  by  dispensing  with  the  services  of  the 
night  watchman.  The  ordinance  was  adopted  by  the  votes  of  three 
trustees,  W.  P.  Craig,  Edward  P.  Huston  and  T.  B.  Gibson.  The 
saloon  fought  the  ordinance  and  Mayor  Britt,  who  was  engaged  in 
the  wholesale  liquor  business,  refused  to  sign  it.  Mandamus  pro- 
ceedings followed  and  the  judge  of  the  superior  court  decided  that 
the  mayor  must  sign  it.  The  decision  was  rendered  just  before  the 
next  city  election,  when  midnight  closing  was  made  an  issue  in  the 
candidacy  of  Edward  P.  Huston,  one  of  the  trustees  who  had  voted 
for  it.  He  was  re-elected  and  midnight  closing  became  the  fixed 
policy  of  the  city. 

The  next  board  raised  the  license  fee  to  $40  per  quarter  and 
adopted  a  precinct  option  ordinance  and  later  submitted  the  saloon 
question  to  the  voters  of  the  city  for  the  first  time  on  April  13,  1903. 
This  board  (Gibson,  Craig,  Troop,  Huston  and  Brown)  was  the  first 
in  Northern  California  to  give  the  voters  of  a  city  the  opportunity 
to  vote  on  the  saloon  question.  The  vote  on  April  13,  1903,  was  as 
follows:  Total  vote  cast  830;  for  saloons  424;  no  saloons  316;  ma- 
jority for  the  saloons  108. 

On  April  11,  1905,  another  board  was  elected,  as  follows :  R.  H. 
Beamer,  W.  H.  Alexander,  W.  H.  Troop,  Douglas  Balfour  and  Joe 
Craig.  This  board  in  December,  1905,  raised  the  license  fee  to  $80 
per  quarter.  The  saloon  men  opposed  it  and  made  an  unsuccessful 
effort  to  have  it  reduced  to  $60. 

The  saloon  question  was  for  the  second  time  submitted  to  the 
voters  of  Woodland  by  order  of  the  board  on  February  19,  1907, 
Craig,  Beamer  and  Alexander  voting  aye,  and  Balfour  no,  Troop 
absent.  The  election  was  held  on  April  8,  1907,  resulting  as  follows : 
Total  vote  cast  826;  for  saloons  382;  no  saloons  353;  majority  for 
saloons  29.  In  both  of  the  elections  the  majority  of  the  resident 
voters  voted  against  the  saloons,  but  their  vote  was  overcome  by 
colonized  voters  imported  by  the  liquor  interests. 

The  next  board  of  trustees  (Mitchell,  Curson,  Boots,  White  and 
Muegge)  were  elected  on  a  platform  that  pledged  them  not  to  re- 
open the  saloon  question  during  their  term  of  office,  four  years. 
They  fixed  the  license  fee  at  $100  per  quarter.  Near  the  close  of  the 
four  years,  at  the  February  meeting,  1911,  G.  P.  Hurst,  in  behalf  of 
the  anti-saloon  forces,  asked  the  board  that  the  saloon  question  be 
again  submitted  at  the  city  election,  to  be  held  April  11,  1911. 
Trustee  White  moved  that  the  question  be  submitted;  Trustee 
Boots  and  Trustee  Curson  seconded  the  motion  simultaneously.  On 
the  roll  call  the  vote  stood:  ayes,  White,  Mitchell,  Boots  and  Curson; 
no,  Muegge.  On  election  day,  April  10,  1911,  the  anti-saloon  forces 
won  by  the  following  vote :   Total  vote  cast  900 ;  for  saloons  395 ;  no 


160  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

saloons  431;  majority  against  saloons  36.  The  Woodland  saloons 
were  closed  by  ordinance  August  1,  1911.  In  the  meantime  the  new 
local  option  law  passed  by  the  legislature  in  March  of  the  same  year 
went  into  effect  and  under  its  provisions  the  saloon  men  petitioned 
for  another  election,  hoping  that  the  voters  might  reverse  their  de- 
cision. The  trustees  ordered  the  election  and  fixed  the  date  for  the 
same  on  Tuesday,  December  12,  1911.  Full  suffrage  was  given  to 
the  women  of  California  on  October  10,  1911,  and  Thursday,  October 
19,  1911,  will  long  be  remembered  as  the  first  registration  day  for 
the  women  of  Woodland.  Many  women  were  lined  up  at  the  court- 
house before  the  clerk's  office  was  opened  for  business.  At  six 
o'clock  p.  m.,  there  were  still  fifty  women  in  line  waiting  to  reach 
the  desk  of  the  clerk,  who  worked  overtime  to  get  them  all  regis- 
tered. About  four  hundred  women  registered  during  the  day. 
Some  of  them  were  over  eighty  years  of  age,  and  all  of  them  were 
determined  to  get  their  names  on  the  register  in  time  to  avail  them- 
selves of  the  first  opportunity  given  them  to  express  their  wishes  at 
the  ballot  box  in  regard  to  the  re-opening  of  the  saloons  in  Wood- 
land. When  the  polls  were  opened  on  election  day  the  women  were 
at  the  polls  ready  to  vote,  and  their  ballot  helped  settle  the  saloon 
question  in  Woodland  and  it  was  settled  right.  The  vote  was  as  fol- 
lows: Total  vote  cast,  1,222;  for  saloons  452;  no  saloons  770;  ma- 
jority against  saloons  318. 

The  closing  of  the  saloons  has  not  "killed  the  town,"  as  was 
predicted  by  the  liquor  men,  but  business  has  been  better,  the  city 
is  building  up  rapidly,  all  buildings  on  Main  street,  including  those 
formerly  occupied  by  saloons,  are  occupied,  and  the  delinquent  tax 
list  the  smallest  in  the  history  of  the  county.  There  has  been  a 
marked  decrease  in  drunkenness  and  disorder,  the  city  jail  being 
empty  most  of  the  time,  the  number  of  prisoners  in  the  county  jail 
has  been  less  and  the  most  of  them  are  vagrants,  products  of  the 
Sacramento  saloons,  who  have  been  ordered  out  of  that  city  by  the 
officials,  and  they  congregate  in  or  near  Broderick,  in  Yolo  county, 
just  across  the  river.  But  the  work  is  not  finished.  It  will  be  a  con- 
stant fight  to  retain  what  we  have  won  and  add  to  it  Broderick  and 
Clarksburg.  We  must  also  do  our  part  toward  securing  state  and 
national  prohibition  of  the  manufacture  and  sale  of  alcoholic  liquors 
for  beverage  purposes,  and  better  law  enforcement. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  161 


CHAPTER  XXXI. 
WOODLAND  LIBRARY  AND  WOMEN'S   CLUBS 

The  Woodland  library  was  opened  to  the  public  July  4,  1S74. 
A  generous  donation  of  books  had  been  presented  to  the  association 
by  the  citizens  of  the  town.  Two  rooms  had  been  provided  with  all 
arrangements  complete  for  the  comfort  of  visitors  and  librarian, 
who  was  in  attendance  every  evening  in  the  week  except  Sunday. 

To  become  a  member  of  the  library  it  was  necessary  to  pay 
into  the  treasury  at  the  beginning  the  sum  of  $1.  Afterwards 
there  was  required  a  quarterly  payment  of  $1.  Those  who  com- 
plied with  these  regulations  were  allowed  to  take  books  to  their 
homes.  The  expenses  were  $10  per  month  for  rent;  $10  to  the 
librarian;  gas  bills  varying  from  $1.50  to  $4  per  month;  fuel,  and 
the  price  of  magazines  and  newspapers.  Notwithstanding  this  large 
outlay  the  association  managed  to  obtain  sufficient  revenue  from 
membership  dues  and  proceeds  from  entertainments  given  by  the 
ladies  of  the  association  to  pay  all  expenses  and  have  funds  left 
with  which  to  procure  new  books. 

Ice  cream  was  sold  all  day  and  in  the  evening  of  July  4,  1874. 
The  ladies  were  indefatigable  in  their  efforts  to  make  the  venture 
a  success  and  the  people  generously  responded  to  them,  so  that  at 
the  end  of  the  day  they  had  quite  a  respectable  sum  at  their  dis- 
posal for  the  first  purchase  of  books.  From  1874  until  the  fall  of 
1879  the  ladies  never  failed  in  their  efforts  to  make  the  experiment 
a  success.  They  were  intelligent,  talented,  practical  women,  but  it 
required  money  to  keep  a  free  reading  room  open  every  evening  for 
five  years.  As  the  membership  dues  were  insufficient  for  that  pur- 
pose, they  resorted  to  every  expedient  to  raise  funds.  They  made 
and  sold  ice  cream  at  church  festivals,  balls,  picnics,  parties,  holiday 
entertainments  and  in  the  circus  tent  of  Montgomery  Queens  circus 
twice  when  it  was  erected  on  the  old  college  campus  They  gave 
entertainments  themselves,  admission  free,  but  exacted  small 
charges  for  refreshments. 

The  reading  room  being  open  and  free  to  all,  the  membership 
finally  decreased,  funds  fell  short  ,and,  but  for  the  untiring  efforts 
of  those  faithful  ladies,  the  rooms  would  have  been  closed  long  be- 
fore 1879.  In  the  fall  of  that  year,  at  the  annual  election  of  trus- 
tees, the  financial  condition  of  the  library  and  its  future  possibili- 
ties were  discussed.  They  owed  nothing,  but  the  prospective  reve- 
nue was  inadequate  for  the  maintenance  of  the  reading  room.  The 
committee  reluctantly  determined  to  close  the  rooms  until  less  ex- 
pensive arrangements  could  be  made. 


162  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

In  January,  1880,  Mrs.  Glendenning  took  charge  of  the  books 
in  her  own  home.  Members  were  allowed  to  draw  books  at  stated 
hours  only,  thus  saving  expense.  A  small  salary  was  paid  to  the 
custodian  and  from  time  to  time  a  few  new  books  were  bought. 
After  more  than  a  year  the  board  again  became  discouraged  be- 
cause of  lack  of  means  and  the  books  were  boxed  and  stored,  after 
which  the  ladies  waited  patiently  for  brighter  prospects.  In  Sep- 
tember, 1881,  two  rooms  were  rented  in  the  Thomas  and  Clanton 
building  (now  Physicians'  building),  corner  of  Main  and  First 
streets,  carpeted,  furnished,  warmed  and  lighted.  The  books  were 
placed  in  neat  cases  and  the  same  privileges  as  of  old  were  offered 
to  the  members  and  visitors.  The  different  ladies  in  turn  acted  as 
librarian  three  evenings  and  one  afternoon  each  week,  without  any 
remuneration.  These  devoted  ladies  were  Mrs.  F.  S.  Freeman  (first 
president),  Mrs.  George  Fiske  (first  vice-president),  Mrs.  Addie 
Baker  (secretary,  to  whom  we  are  indebted  for  the  interesting  data 
incorporated  in  this  history),  Mrs.  G.  C.  Grimes,  Mrs.  John  Free- 
man, Mrs.  Elizabeth  Craft  (now  deceased),  Mrs.  Herbert  Coil,  Mrs. 
John  Elston,  Mrs.  Gertrude  Simpson,  and  Mrs.  Holmes,  now  de- 
ceased. 

In  August,  1888,  a  committee  from  the  Y.  M.  C.  A.  visited  the 
board  and  proposed  to  place  the  books  in  the  library  rooms  of  their 
building,  with  the  understanding  that  the  librarian  of  the  Y.  M. 
C.  A.  should  be  in  daily  attendance  from  9  a.  m.  to  9  p.  m.  Their 
proposition  was  accepted  and  the  books  removed  to  their  library 
rooms.  After  five  months  the  board  discovered  that  the  conditions 
were  not  complied  with,  and  that  books  were  lost  and  misused.  The 
ladies  again  took  the  books  in  their  charge,  packing  and  storing 
them  until  May,  1891,  when  they  were  placed  in  the  hands  of  the 
city  board  of  library  trustees,  where  they  are  at  present.  The  gen- 
tlemen were  Louis  Walker,  C.  F.  Thomas,  C.  W.  Thomas,  Dr. 
Holmes  and  John  McGoffey. 

During  the  years  of  its  struggle  for  existence  the  W.  C.  T.  U., 
which  had  been  organized  in  1883  in  Woodland  by  Miss  Willard, 
aided  and  abetted  the  efforts  made  by  the  library  association  in 
every  way  they  could.  Assisted  by  the  faculty  and  students  of  Hes- 
perian College,  they  gave  an  entertainment  at  the  opera  house  for 
the  benefit  of  the  library  and  donated  the  net  proceeds,  $75,  to  its 
help — this  and  $500  given  by  A.  D.  Porter  being  the  only  gifts  of 
money  noted  in  the  records  of  the  library.  After  the  city  had 
undertaken  the  management  of  the  reading  room,  Walter  F.  Huston 
was  appointed  librarian.  He  retained  the  position  until  failing 
health  interfered  with  his  work.  During  this  time  his  wife,  Mrs. 
S.  A.  Huston  of  the  "Home  Alliance,"  was  his  faithful  and  tireless 
assistant.    At  that  time  there  was  only  a  limited  number  of  books, 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  163 

which  were  not  allowed  to  be  withdrawn  from  the  reading  room,  but 
were  free  of  access  to  the  public  every  evening  of  the  week.  Finally, 
with  a  fixed  allowance  from  the  city  board  of  trustees  and  the  dona- 
tion from  Mr.  Porter,  it .  was  determined  to  change  the  reading- 
room  into  a  free  public  library.  New  books  were  bought,  rules  and 
regulations  adopted,  and  in  June,  1892,  the  Woodland  Free  Library 
became  an  accomplished  fact. 

Mrs.  Ada  Wallace  was  elected  librarian,  which  position  she 
still  retains.  Magazines  and  newspapers  were  furnished  and  the 
books  were  allowed  to  be  withdrawn  on  application  of  card  holders. 
During  the  twenty  years  of  its  existence  there  has  been  a  steady 
growth  in  the  library,  the  number  of  books  has  increased  from 
1,200  to  7,500,  readers  have  included  all  classes,  from  children  of 
ten  years  to  elderly  men  and  women.  The  gentlemen  who  have 
kindly  acted  as  trustees  have  been,  without  exception,  intelligent, 
high-minded,  conscientious  men  whose  one  aim  was  to  make  the 
library  an  honor  to  the  town. 

The  books  include  all  classes  of  literature,  philosophy,  religion, 
sociology,  natural  sciences,  arts,  history,  travel,  essays,  biography, 
poetry  and  drama;  the  best  novelists  are  represented,  American, 
English,  French,  German,  Spanish  and  Irish.  Visitors  to  the  library 
from  all  over  this  state  and  others  express  their  surprise  and 
pleasure  at  the  excellence  of  so  small  a  library,  containing  as  it  does 
a  great  number  of  valuable  and  uncommon  books.  As  in  numberless 
other  cases  the  institution  has  been  handicapped  for  want  of  means, 
but  by  economy  and  judicious  expenditure  of  money  it  has  been  kept 
alive  and  growing,  though  slowly. 

In  1904  the  trustees  secured  a  donation  of  $10,000  from  Andrew 
Carnegie  and  after  the  usual  debate  as  to  location  and  other  pre- 
liminaries, the  new  building  was  erected  at  the  corner  of  First  and 
Court  streets.  It  is  of  the  Mission  style,  situated  in  large,  beautiful 
park-like  grounds,  carpeted  with  blue-grass  and  containing  many 
fine  palms  and  other  ornamental  trees.  All  visitors  to  Woodland 
express  great  admiration  for  the  grounds,  which  seem  to  exceed  in 
size  and  beauty  nearly  all  other  library  sites  in  the  state.  The  city 
is  indebted  to  K.  H.  Beamer,  ex-mayor,  for  his  zeal  and  taste  in  the 
arrangement  of  the  grounds.  The  corner-stone  of  the  new  building 
was  laid  June  7,  1904,  just  thirty  years  after  the  Woodland  library 
was  first  organized,  and  the  librarian,  Mrs.  Ada  Wallace,  had  the 
day  before  completed  her  twelfth  year  as  librarian.  Douglas  Bal- 
four, one  of  the  city  trustees,  in  Mayor  Beamer 's  absence  gave  a 
concise  history  of  the  events  leading  up  to  the  securing  of  the  new 
library.  There  were  the  usual  ceremonies  attending  the  event,  with 
music  and  addresses.  The  trustees  who  had  so  perseveringly  lent 
themselves  to  the  work  were  T.  W.  Prone,  president;  L.  H.  Steph- 


164  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

ens,  secretary ;  A.  W.  North,  J.  T.  Grant  and  T.  R.  Slielton,  three  of 
whom  (Messrs.  Stephens,  Grant  and  Shelton)  are  still  faithfully  ful- 
filling their  duties  as  library  trustees. 

The  city  library  is  in  the  upper  part  of  the  building.  The  lower 
story  was  leased  to  the  Ladies'  Improvement  Club  for  a  term  of 
years,  with  the  condition  that  they  finish  and  furnish  the  apart- 
ment suitably,  a  work  they  accomplished  with  great  taste  and  good 
judgment. 

The  history  of  the  struggle  of  the  Woodland  Library  for  exist- 
ence during  so  many  years  should  be  an  eloquent  appeal  to  the 
public  and  private  sympathies  of  the  citizens  for  help  to  promote  its 
future  growth.  The  following  statistics  are  taken  from  the  News 
Notes  of  California  Library:  "Woodland  Free  Public  Library,  Mrs. 
Ada  Wallace,  librarian,  established  June,  1874;  as  free  public  1891. 
Annual  income  $1,289,  received  from  city  taxation,  etc.;  two  em- 
ployes, one  janitor.  Open  to  all  residents  of  the  county  daily  except 
Christmas;  week  days,  1:30  to  5:30  and  7  to  9:30  p.  m. ;  Sundays, 
2 :30  to  5 :30  and  7  to  9 :30  p.  m.  Owns  Carnegie  building  valued  at 
$11,000.  Twenty  magazines  received  regularly,  total  volumes 
7,500." 

THE  YOLO  COUNTY  LIBEAEY 

The  county  library  movement  in  California  is  only  four  years 
old,  having  been  started  in  1908,  but  already  twenty  counties  have 
availed  themselves  of  its  privileges.  The  county  library  did  not 
originate  in  California,  several  states  having  had  county  libraries 
before  us,  but  no  other  state  has  taken  it  up  in  such  a  whole-souled 
way  as  California,  and  to  Yolo  county  belongs  the  honor  of  starting 
the  county  library  system  in  California.  In  1905  a  small  orphan 
lad,  an  invalid,  living  in  the  country,  who  had  devoured  all  the 
books  in  his  school  library,  sent  a  request  to  the  Woodland  Library 
board  asking  that  he  be  permitted  to  draw  books  from  the  Wood- 
land Library  without  paying  the  usual  fee  that  was  charged  to  peo- 
ple living  outside  the  town  limits.  The  library  board  solved  that 
problem  by  paying  his  fee  from  their  own  pockets,  but  the  following 
months  other  small  country  boys  flooded  them  with  similar  requests. 
It  was  obviously  impossible  to  dispose  of  all  these  requests  as  they 
had  the  first  one,  so  they  went  to  the  supervisors  and  obtained  from 
them  an  annual  offering  of  $200,  taken  from  the  advertising  fund, 
on  condition  that  the  Woodland  Library  be  open  to  all  the  residents 
of  Yolo  county  free  of  charge. 

Soon  after  this  was  done  a  meeting  of  the  California  Library 
Association  was  held  in  Woodland,  and  Mr.  Gillis,  state  librarian, 
was  much  interested  in  the  way  the  Woodland  Library  Board  had 
solved  the  problem  of  getting  books  to  the  people  living  in  the  coun- 
try.   As  far  as  it  went  it  was  an  excellent  arrangement,  but  people 


HISTORY  OP  YOLO  COUNTY  165 

living  in  distant  parts  of  the  county  could  not  avail  themselves  of 
the  privilege  offered  and  Mr.  Gillis  then  and  there  decided  that  if 
the  people  in  the  country  wanted  libraries  they  should  have  libraries 
and  just  as  good  libraries  as  their  town  brothers.  From  that 
small  beginning  the  County  Free  Library  system  of  California  has 
grown. 

The  work  went  on  in  that  way  in  Yolo  county  for  two  years 
and  on  July  12,  1910,  the  board  of  supervisors  entered  into  a  con- 
tract with  the  Woodland  Library  trustees  by  which  they  agreed, 
commencing  August  1,  1910,  to  establish  branch  libraries  in  the  var- 
ious parts  of  the  county.  "Deposit  libraries  shall  consist  of  fifty 
or  more  books  and  shall  be  entirely  or  partly  changed  every  three 
months.  ...  In  addition  shipments  will  be  made  to  each  de- 
posit station  not  oftener  than  once  a  week  of  such  books  as  may  be 
called  for  by  deposit  borrowers  and  not  found  in  the  deposit  li- 
brary." For  this  work  the  supervisors  agreed  to  pay  $5,000  the 
first  year.  A  county  librarian,  Miss  Stella  Huntington,  was  engaged 
and  the  work  started  August  1,  1910.  The  first  year  stations  were 
started  at  Davis,  Winters,  Grafton,  Broderick,  Fillmore  school, 
Ouinda,  Dunnigan,  University  Farm  school,  Yolo,  Woodland,  Madi- 
son, Blacks,  Capay  and  Clarksburg.  Stations  have  since  been  added 
at  Esparto  and  Rumsey. 

After  the  regular  stations  were  started  the  first  year  it  was  de- 
cided to  see  wbat  could  be  done  to  help  the  schools.  Under  the  1910 
law  it  was  possible  for  the  school  districts  to  turn  their  library 
funds  over  to  the  County  Library  and  thus  become  branches  of  the 
County  Library  and  entitled  to  regular  library  service.  In  1910- 
1912  twelve  schools  joined  the  County  Library,  so  far  in  1912-1913 
eighteen  schools  have  joined.  They  are:  Canon,  Capay,  Cotton- 
wood, Clover,  Enterprise,  Eureka,  Fairview,  Fillmore,  Grafton, 
Lisbon,  Madison,  Merritt,  Mt.  Pleasant,  North  Grafton,  Oat  Creek, 
Union,  Washington,  Winters.  As  Yolo  county  was  the  first  to  start 
the  County  Library  work  it  was  also  the  first  to  take  up  the  work 
with  the  schools. 

With  the  fifteen  regular  stations  and  the  eighteen  school  sta- 
tions there  are  now  thirty-three  branches  scattered  over  Yolo 
county.  If  books  called  for  are  not  in  the  County  Library  they 
are  borrowed  from  the  State  Library  at  Sacramento  (the  State  Li- 
brary pays  transportation  charges  both  ways  for  books  borrowed 
through  a  County  Library),  so  that  beside  the  books  in  the  County 
Library  and  the  Woodland  Library  there  are  the  150,000  books  in 
the  State  Library  that  are  at  the  service  of  every  man,  woman  and 
child  in  Yolo  county. 

IMPROVEMENT    CLUB 

The  Ladies'  Improvement  Club  was  organized  May  S,  1902,  at 
Hotel  Julian,  with  twenty  ladies  present  out  of  a  list  of  twenty-five. 


166  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

Messrs.  C.  W.  Thomas,  T.  B.  Gibson  and  J.  Reitk,  Jr.,  were  present 
to  assist  and  advise  the  ladies  as  to  methods  and  means  of  beautify- 
ing the  city.     Miss  Carrie  Blowers  was  chosen  chairman  and  Mrs. 

C.  B.  Gray,  secretary. 

At  the  second  meeting  there  were  fifty  ladies  present.    Mrs.  L. 

D.  Lawhead  submitted  a  constitution,  which  was  adopted  without 
amendment.  The  object  of  the  club  was,  organized  action  for  the 
benefit  of  Woodland  and  vicinity.  Miss  Carrie  Blowers  was  chosen 
president;  Mrs.  W.  P.  Craig,  vice-president;  Mrs.  C.  B.  Gray,  secre- 
tary; Mrs.  J.  I.  McConnell,  treasurer;  and  Mrs.  C.  R.  Wilcoxon,  cor- 
responding secretary.  One  of  the  primary  objects  of  the  club  was 
to  secure  a  city  park.  The  observance  of  Arbor  Day  was  also  de- 
cided on  and  has  been  faithfully  fulfilled. 

The  club  accepted  an  invitation  to  join  the  federation  of  the 
Sacramento  Valley  organization.  In  October,  1904,  they  secured 
rooms  in  the  first  floor  of  the  new  Carnegie  library  building.  They 
had  them  finished  and  furnished  beautifully  and  occupied  them  for 
seven  years. 

The  ladies  of  the  club  succeeded  in  getting  able  speakers  for  a 
lecture  course  which  proved  instructive  and  remunerative.  By  per- 
severance and  untiring  effort  they  finally  earned  the  greater  part 
of  the  sum  necessary  to  purchase  a  beautiful  park  of  five  acres  in 
the  southwestern  part  of  Woodland.  The  citizens  aided  them  some- 
what, and  when  the  last  payment  was  made  they  handed  the  deed  to 
the  city  trustees  and  the  work  of  improvement  and  beautifying  the 
park  is  now  in  process  of  completion. 

THE  "FIVE"   CLUB 

Thirty  years  ago,  when  Woodland  had  not  yet  attained  the  dig- 
nity of  an  incorporated  city,  there  were  two  ladies  residing  nearby 
who  became  very  much  interested  in  reading  Shakespeare's  immor- 
tal dramas.  These  two  were  Mrs.  Thomas  Armstrong,  since  de- 
ceased, and  Mrs.  Ann  Blake-Ryder.  Mrs.  Armstrong  was  also  very 
fond  of  the  study  of  history,  so  these  two  ladies  often  met  and  en- 
joyed reading  together.  Other  ladies  at  that  early  date  were  invited 
to  join  them  in  their  readings,  but  were  unable  to  do  so  on  account 
of  household  duties.  After  a  year  or  two  both  ladies  became  resi- 
dents of  Woodland  and  were  near  neighbors.  They  resumed  their 
former  reading  and  gradually  the  study  of  Shakespeare  became  an 
established  habit  with  them,  Mrs.  Armstrong  graciously  yielding 
her  preference  for  history.  At  that  time  Mrs.  Jeanette  Merritt. 
who  was  visiting  her  cousin,  Mrs.  Armstrong,  suggested  that  sev- 
eral other  ladies  be  invited  to  join  them,  as  it  would  make  the  study 
more  interesting  and  instructive  for  them.  They  did  so,  and  the 
result  was  a  club  of  five,  Mrs.  Jeanette  Merritt,  Mrs.  Ruth  Arm- 
strong, Mrs.  C.  W.  Thomas,  Mrs.  Blake-Ryder  and  Mrs.  S.  E.  Peart. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  167 

The  five  soon  became  eight,  by  the  addition  of  Mrs.  Cran,  Mrs.  W. 
H.  Lawson  and  Dr.  Frances  Newton.  They  met  every  two  weeks, 
and  thus  was  created  the  nucleus  of  the  Woodland  Shakespeare 
Club. 

At  the  time  of  its  organization,  in  1885,  there  were  four  ladies 
who  were  eminently  fitted  by  education  and  wide  general  culture  to 
become  leaders  of  the  club.  One  of  these,  Mrs.  Peart,  was  chosen 
and  held  that  position  for  many  years,  her  resignation  being-  uni- 
versally regretted  by  the  club.  She  was  succeeded  by  Mrs.  C.  W. 
Thomas,  who  ably  fulfilled  her  mission. 

The  club  grew  and  flourished  and  many  names  have  been  en- 
rolled in  its  membership.  Some  have  grown  old  in  faithful  service 
to  it.  Some  have  passed  over  into  a  new  existence.  Others  have 
removed  to  new  places  and  are  interested  in  other  club  work.  One 
lady  only,  Mrs.  C.  W.  Thomas,  has  been  an  active  member  continu- 
ously of  the  Woodland  Shakespeare  Club  from  that  first  meeting  at 
Mrs.  Armstrong's  in  1885  until  the  present  time.  At  this  time  the 
club  numbers  thirty-five,  with  a  large  waiting  list.  There  have  been 
one  hundred  and  thirty-three  working  members  since  its  origin. 

They  were  organized  to  read  Shakespeare  and  they  have  made 
a  faithful  study  of  all  his  plays  and  sonnets,  supplementing  that 
reading  with  history  and  critical  analyses  of  the  plays  and  charac- 
ters. Some  of  the  papers  written  have  been  thought  worthy  of  pub- 
lication in  the  "Poet  Lore"  and  other  reviews.  As  the  years  went 
by,  in  addition  to  their  study  of  Shakespeare  they  have  read  Brown- 
ing, Goethe  and  Schiller.  They  have  studied  the  old  Greek  trage- 
dies and  comedies.  Passion  plays  and  medieval  drama  have  claimed 
their  attention.  They  have  not  overlooked  the  French^and  Spanish 
classics  of  the  golden  age  of  literature  in  those  countries.  Ibsen 
and  Maeterlinck  have  been  studied  and  discussed,  approved  and  dis- 
approved, for  one  notable  feature  of  the  club  has  always  been  free- 
dom of  thought  and  expression. 

During  the  last  two  years  the  club  has  devoted  its  time  to  the 
study  of  the  Development  of  the  Drama,  from  the  remotest  times 
down  to  the  present.  In  connection  with  this  many  old  plays  of  dif- 
ferent nations  and  peoples  have  been  discovered  and  studied.  The 
ladies  have  borrowed  books  from  the  state  library,  besides  using 
all  of  those  of  the  city  library  referring  to  the  drama.  With  all 
this  exhaustive  study  the  club  has  not  neglected  social  obligations. 
It  has  been  the  custom  during  all  these  years  to  celebrate  Shake- 
speare's birthday  by  a  rural  fete,  at  which  all  the  members  iA'  the 
club  with  their  friends  assemble.  For  years  in  conjunction  with  the 
Mutual  Club  of  ladies  and  gentlemen  (then  in  existence)  they  met 
at  the  close  of  the  season  at  the  country  home  of  Mrs.  Pearl  for  an 
outing.     Later  an  annual   picnic  was   held  at  Coil's  Grove,   where 


168  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

friends  and  friends'  friends  met  for  comnranion  with  nature  and 
each  other.  Twice  there  has  been  a  reunion  at  ' '  Sequoia, ' '  the  home 
of  Mrs.  Thomas.  On  all  these  occasions  there  has  been  a  "feast  of 
reason"  as  well  as  a  flow  of  soul,  when  friends,  old  and  new,  met  in 
joyous  and  sad  conclave. 

In  1910  the  club  celebrated  its  twenty-fifth  birthday,  thus  rank- 
ing as  the  oldest  Shakespeare  club  in  the  state.  The  occasion  was 
one  of  unusual  interest.  It  was  held  at  the  home  of  Mrs.  Blanc-h- 
ard. Many  guests  assembled,  among  them  ex-members  from  towns 
and  cities.  There  was  a  fitting  program,  music,  flowers  and  dainty 
refreshments.  The  program  reflected  the  wide  influence  of  the  cul- 
ture the  members  had  received  during  the  years  of  its  existence. 
There  was  a  welcome  in  verse,  a  paraphrase  of  the  many  addresses 
of  welcome  to  be  found  in  Shakespeare's  plays  arranged  by  Mrs. 
Wallace  and  delivered  by  Mrs.  Richard  Brown.  Miss  Vivian  of  the 
San  Jose  Normal  sent  a  scholarly  paper  on  Shakespeare  in  Art; 
Mrs.  B.  M.  Miller,  an  ex-president  of  the  club,  delivered  an  instruc- 
tive address  on  the  Modern  Drama;  Mrs.  Henry  Schuler  read  a 
paper  on  Staging  of  Drama  in  Shakespeare's  Time  and  the  Present 
Day;  Mrs.  Genoa  Pond,  of  Berkeley,  gave  Fraternal  Greetings  from 
the  many  prominent  women  at  the  Bay  cities  who  had  begun  their 
career  in  Woodland;  Miss  Lulu  Shelton,  a  former  teacher  in  Wood- 
land and  an  active  worker  in  the  club,  gave  a  clever  and  humorous 
address  on  Appreciation.  It  related  to  the  development  of  women 
along  lines  of  higher  education  and  culture  and  dealt  in  clever  hits 
at  the  stronger  sex  who  have  systematically  opposed  the  advance- 
ment of  women. 

There  are  fourteen  deaths  to  record  during  the  twenty-six  years 
life  of  the  club.  Two  presidents  have  been  removed  from  their 
earthly  work,  Mrs.  Atkinson  and  Mrs.  Lawson,  both  faithful,  ef- 
ficient and  beloved.  One  of  the  founders  of  the  club  also,  Mrs.  Ruth 
Armstrong,  has  gone  to  her  reward,  a  noble  woman,  tenderly 
mourned. 

The  presidents  of  the  club  have  been  Mrs.  S.  S.  Peart,  Mrs.  C. 
W.  Thomas,  Mrs.  H.  Coil,  Mrs.  B.  M.  Miller,  Mrs.  S.  Atkinson,  Mrs. 
M.  W.  Ward,  Mrs.  Ryder-Blake,  Mrs.  W.  H.  Lawson  and  Mrs.  T. 
Royles.  The  women  of  the  club  have  not  been  idle  ones — many  have 
led  very  busy  lives,  doing  work  along  practical,  artistic  and  intel- 
lectual lines.  They  have  been  leaders  of  clubs  elsewhere,  have  lec- 
tured and  directed  the  study  of  numberless  women  elsewhere.  They 
have  never  stopped  in  their  own  individual  growth,  have  kept 
abreast  with  all  the  important  events  of  the  age,  have  fitted  them- 
selves for  the  added  responsibilities  which  legislation  has  thrust 
upon  them  and  will  no  doubt  lend  their  aid  to  the  furtherance  of 
civic  reform  in  every  community  where  they  dwell.    They  rank  high 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  169 

as  cultured,  highly-developed  women  iu  all  the  attributes  that  be- 
long to  noble  womanhood. 

WOODLAND    STUDY    CLUB 

Mrs.  L.  D.  Lawhead,  vice-principal  of  the  Woodland  High 
school,  inaugurated  some  years  ago  a  study  club  for  the  benefit  of 
friends  and  pupils.  The  object,  as  its  name  testifies,  is  study,  not 
of  any  one  particular  object,  but  to  be  extended  over  broad  fields  of 
knowledge.  For  several  years  they  devoted  their  time  to  art,  paint- 
ing, sculpture  and  architecture.  The  history  of  art,  its  development 
and  improvement  included  the  study  of  the  great  masters  in  differ- 
ent lines  and  acquaintance  through  pictures  and  illustration  of  then- 
noted  works.  By  way  of  variation  and  recreation  they  have  taken 
up  the  reading  of  various  authors. 

WOODLAND    CUEEENT    TOPICS    CLUB 

This  club  was  organized  several  years  ago  and  now  has  a  large 
membership.  The  members  are  enthusiastic  in  their  efforts  to  keep 
well  informed  as  to  the  status  of  different  countries  politically  and 
socially,  and  to  know  of  the  religious  movements  of  the  world  and 
scientific  discoveries  and  developments.  This  is  a  very  important 
factor  in  the  development  of  any  community,  as  it  serves  to  bring 
about  a  common  interest  in  affairs  between  the  sexes. 

MUTUAL    CLUB 

This  club  was  organized  at  Woodland  in  October,  1885.  C.  W. 
Thomas  was  its  real  founder  and  chief  organizer.  For  a  number  of 
years  the  membership  was  limited  to  twenty,  meetings  were  held  at 
private  houses  and  elaborate  and  carefully  prepared  papers  were 
the  rule.  The  members  as  a  rule  were  the  busy  people  of  the  city. 
and  after  the  lapse  of  a  few  years  the  growing  duties  and  responsi- 
bilities operating  to  prevent  work  of  this  kind,  the  long  papers  were 
omitted  and  the  preparation  was  for  general  debate  and  discussion 
instead.  The  object  was  mutual  improvement,  culture  and  the  study 
of  literature. 

The  club  was  in  actual  existence  until  about  1905.  In  the  mean- 
time many  other  clubs  had  been  formed  which  exacted  less  of  the 
members  than  did  the  Mutual,  and  the  membership  gradually 
dwindled.  Finally  there  were  but  a  few  of  the  real  workers  left, 
and  these,  owing  to  other  obligations  and  feeling  their  inability  to 
devote  the  necessary  time  and  energy  to  keep  up  the  work  of  the 
club,  it  was  decided  to  disband.  The  presidents  were  C.  W.  Thomas, 
G.  P.  Hurst,  Mrs.  S.  E.  Peart.  Mrs.  L.  P.  Lawhead,  Dr.  Elizabeth 
Yates,  Dr.  M.  W.  Ward,  R,  L.  Simpson  and  C.  W.  Bush. 


170  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 


THE   FOKTNIGHTLY    CLUB 


The  Fortnightly  Club  has  been  in  active  existence  for  a  number 
of  years.  It  was  organized  for  the  benefit  of  school  teachers  and 
other  busy  women  who  could  not  find  time  to  attend  tbe  Shake- 
speare Club,  or  for  whom  there  was  no  room  in  that  club.  The 
object  was  and  is  to  study  Shakespeare.  They  are  expected  to  add 
to  this  work-by  supplementary  reading  of  history,  criticism,  works 
of  many  dramatists  and  other  good  literature.  The  number  in  the 
club  is  limited  to  about  twenty  members  and  they  are  all  earnest 
and  zealous.  Many  of  them  are  women  advanced  in  years  who 
found  no  time  in  the  strenuous  time  of  youth  during  the  early  days 
of  California  for  literary  pursuits. 

Mrs.  M.  G.  Lee  has  been  the  leader  of  the  club  for  several 
years.  She  is  one  of  the  pioneer  women  of  Yolo  county,  a  woman  of 
unusual  mentality,  a  great  reader  and  widely  conversant  with  all  the 
great  affairs  of  the  world.  She  is  in  her  seventy-fifth  year  and  the 
mother  of  a  large  family,  amongst  whom  is  Miss  Harriet  Lee,  who 
is  very  prominent  in  educational  circles  and  as  a  native  daughter 
has  taken  a  very  active  interest  in  all  local  and  many  state  affairs. 
Mrs.  Lee  is  a  veritable  mother  to  the  younger  members  of  the  club, 
who  follow  her  guidance  and  agree  that  no  one  could  fill  her  place. 

In  entering  a  new  year  of  study  they  will  no  doubt  add  to  their 
already  fine  reputation  as  good  faithful  students  in  various  lines. 
The  club  was  formed  by  Dr.  Elizabeth  Yates,  of  Santa  Rosa,  Miss 
Martha  Fisher  (now  Mrs.  Clark,  of  Berkeley),  and  Miss  Calthea 
Vivian,  in  the  art  department  of  the  San  Jose  normal  school.  They 
met  for  years  at  the  home  of  Mrs.  B.  M.  Miller  (now  in  New  York 
for  the  purpose  of  introducing  some  plays  she  has  written),  after- 
wards at  the  various  homes  of  the  members  of  the  club. 


.  u^c^^^ia^^y 


BIOGRAPHICAL 


HON.  FRANK  S.  FREEMAN 

Xo  name  is  associated  more  intimately  or  more  honorably  with 
the  early  history  of  Woodland,  Cal.,  than  that  of  the  eminent 
citizen  which  appears  above.  He  was  the  founder  of  the  city,  the 
promoter  of  its  important  pioneer  enterprises,  its  first  merchant, 
its  first  postmaster  and  the  projector  of  the  measures  that  made 
possible  the  progressive  Woodland  of  the  twentieth  century.  His 
the  prophetic  vision  that  discerned  in  the  attractive  wooded  lands 
a  choice  site  for  a  town;  his  the  energy  that  made  of  the  new 
town  a  business  center  for  the  surrounding  agricultural  communi- 
ties; his  the  ambitious  purpose  that  brought  about  the  removal  of 
the  county  seat  to  the  municipality  he  was  planning  and  building; 
and  his  the  generous  hand  that  donated  all  the  land  required  by  the 
county  for  its  buildings.  The  name,  Woodland,  which  at  the  sug- 
gestion of  his  wife  he  gave  to  the  village  which  had  become  known 
as  Yolo  City,  brings  to  the  mental  vision  a  picture  of  broad  lands 
covered  with  great  old  trees,  and  such  was  the  appearance  of  the 
spot  during  the  '50s  when  along  its  streets  giant  oaks  lifted  their 
heads  to  the  clouds  and  cast  a  grateful  shade  far  out  upon  the 
wayside  meadows. 

The  Freeman  family  of  America  is  traced  to  colonial  Virginia, 
whence  some  of  the  name  crossed  the  mountains  into  Kentucky 
and  later  were  borne  on  the  tide  of  emigration  to  Missouri.  J.  N. 
and  Mary  (Parman)  Freeman,  born  in  Kentucky,  removed  in 
1833  to  Buchanan  county,  Mo.,  and  took  up  government  land  on 
Blacksnake  creek,  within  the  present  limits  of  the  city  of  St. 
Joseph.  Frank  S.  Freeman  was  born  in  Knox  county,  Ky.,  Christ- 
mas, 1832,  but  his  earliest  recollections  were  of  Western  Missouri. 
When  he  was  only  fourteen  years  old  he  secured  an  appointment  in 
the  commissary  department  of  the  United  States  army,  which 
then  was  in  the  war  with  Mexico.  Until  1848  he  was  stationed  at 
Santa  Fe,  with  Van  Fleet,  quartermaster  of  Doniphan's  regiment. 
Then,  going  north  as  far  as  St.  Louis,  he  joined  the  commissary 
department  of  Rodney  Hopkins,  wagon  master  with  the  Oregon 
battalion  of  five  hundred  men.  During  a  march  westward,  this  bat 
talion  built  Fort  Kearney,  Fort  Childs  and  Fort  Laramie,  and 
later  its  members  were  discharged  at  Fort  Leavenworth. 

As  soon  as  news  of  the  discovery  of  gold  in  California  was 
received,  Mr.  Freeman  resolved  to  start  without  unnecessary  delay 


174  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

for  the  coast,  and  in  April,  1849,  he  joined  a  company  organized  at 
St.  Joseph  and  bought  an  interest  in  one  of  the  wagons  of  the 
outfit;  and  as  far  as  Fort  Hall  he  guided  the  train,  his  services 
proving  of  the  utmost  value  to  his  companions  during  that  part 
of  the  perilous  trip.  The  party  arrived  at  Hangtown  August  5, 
and  the  young  gold-seeker  began  at  once  to  mine,  and  unusual  good 
fortune  rewarded  his  efforts  in  the  diggings  at  Coloma  and 
Georgetown.  Within  less  than  a  year  his  profits  amounted  to 
$3,000,  which  he  brought  to  Yolo  county,  where  he  took  up  land  on 
the  north  side  of  Cache  creek,  about  sixteen  miles  west  of  the  site 
of  Woodland.  There  he  began  raising  grain  and  stock,  and  in  1851 
he  and  two  partners  sowed  a  hundred  acres  of  barley  which 
yielded  fifty  bushels  to  the  acre  and  brought  six  cents  a  pound  at 
Sacramento  and  Grass  Valley. 

In  1855  Mr.  Freeman  located  at  Willow  Slough,  where  he 
raised  stock  for  two  years.  In  1857  he  bought  a  claim  to  one  hun- 
dred and  sixty  acres,  a  part  of  which  is  now  within  the  city  limits 
of  Woodland,  north  of  Main  street.  After  a  careful  study  of  the 
country  and  all  local  conditions,  he  decided  to  start  a  town  there, 
and  subsequent  events  have  justified  his  practical  judgment.  His 
first  step  toward  the  project  was  the  establishment  of  a  store  on 
the  present  site  of  the  Main  street  school  house.  In  1860  he 
removed  his  stock  of  goods  to  the  present  site  of  the  E.  B.  Cranston 
store,  First  and  Main,  and  in  that  year  he  platted  the  town.  Next 
he  secured  the  location  there  of  a  postoffice,  of  which  he  was 
appointed  postmaster,  and  soon  afterward  he  was  made  the  local 
agent  of  the  WTells-Fargo  Express  Company.  He  found  it  not 
easy  to  induce  home-seekers  to  venture  their  precious  capital  in 
his  undeveloped  town,  and  to  make  it  more  of  a  business  center  he 
erected  a  grist  mill  which  he  operated  two  years,  then  sold.  During 
that  period  he  directed  the  destinies  of  a  very  creditable  hardware 
store.  He  introduced  a  meat  market,  a  harness  shop,  a  blacksmith 
shop,  a  tin  shop,  a  grocery,  a  clothing  store  and  a  drygoods  store, 
and  disposed  of  each  in  turn  as  soon  as  he  could  find  a  buyer  for 
it.  Land  he  sold  very  low,  his  only  stipulation  being  that  a  building 
must  be  erected  on  it  within  three  months.  One  day  in  1861  he 
cut  wheat  which  was  threshed,  milled  and  made  into  biscuits  by 
Mrs.  Freeman  and  were  on  his  table  within  twelve  hours  from  the 
time  when  the  grain  had  been  growing.  The  rapid  development  of 
the  town  brought  many  new  responsibilities  to  its  founder,  who 
soon  felt  obliged  to  resign  as  postmaster  and  as  express  agent  in 
order  to  devote  all  his  time  to  its  growing  and  broadening  interests. 
In  1868  the  first  bank  in  the  town  was  established.  John  D. 
Stephens  took  one-half  the  stock  and  through  the  efforts  of  Mr. 
Freeman  the  other  half  was  placed  among  citizens,  he  becoming  a 
heavy  shareholder.    From  the  organization  of  the  bank  until   his 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  175 

death  he  was  its  vice-president.  In  1872  he  built  a  brick  block,  part 
of  which  is  now  the  Diggs  building,  and  moved  his  hardware  store 
into  part  of  it.  It  was  not  until  1884,  when  he  had  for  a  quarter  of 
a  century  been  Woodland's  foremost  citizen,  that  he  sold  out  his 
mercantile  interests.  But  he  did  not  relinquish  his  farming  inter- 
ests, which  he  retained  until  many  years  later.  Always  progres- 
sive in  his  ideas,  he  was  the  first  in  the  county  to  use  a  steam  com- 
bined harvester  and  thresher,  first  to  irrigate  wheatfields,  first  to 
cultivate  the  foothills  and  sow  them  to  grain. 

Neighbor  and  friend,  Mr.  Freeman  came  in  time  to  be  affec- 
tionately called  Major  Freeman.  He  found  time  from  his  business 
to  devote  to  the  politics  of  his  time  and  locality  and  gave  ad- 
herence in  early  days  to  the  principles  and  policies  of  the  Demo- 
cratic party.  But  he  was  one  of  the  "progressives"  of  his  day.  His 
last  Democratic  presidential  vote  was  cast  in  1856  for  the  Hon. 
James  Buchanan,  and  in  1860  he  was  among  those  who  voted  for 
Lincoln,  and  thereafter  he  was  a  loyal  Republican.  He  was  elected 
to  the  legislature  in  1870,  and  served  on  the  ways  and  means 
committee  and  on  the  swamp  lands  committee,  and  re-elected  in 
1872,  and  appointed  to  the  same  committees  and  given  the  chair- 
manship of  the  ways  and  means  committee.  His  second  term  was 
particularly  fruitful  of  results.  He  advocated  thirty-eight  meas- 
ures that  became  laws.  After  a  long  fight  against  powerful  op- 
position, he  carried  the  Freeman  freights  and  fare  bill  through  the 
lower  house,  but  the  tremendous  influence  of  the  railroads  defeated 
the  measure  in  the  senate.  His  efforts  in  behalf  of  the  bill  were 
warmly  backed  by  the  San  Francisco  Examiner,  the  San  Francisco 
Bulletin,  the  San  Francisco  Chronicle  and  the  Sacramento  Union. 
The  measure  inspired  wide  and  abiding  interest  and  its  patriotic 
advocacy  brought  to  its  creator  a  national  reputation.  One  of 
the  bills  which  Major  Freeman  was  successful  in  passing  was 
that  which  made  the  compensation  of  Yolo  county  officials  pay- 
able in  salaries  instead  of  by  fees.  Another  provided  for  the  in- 
corporation of  Woodland.  In  his  last  session  he  was  a  candidate 
for  speaker,  but  was  defeated  by  the  Democratic  majority  in  the 
house.  So  great  was  his  popularity  throughout  the  state  that  in 
1874  he  was  widely  talked  of  in  connection  with  the  governorship. 
But  such  suggestions  were  discouraged  by  him.  His  friendly  title 
dated  from  the  Civil  war  period,  when  he  held  a  major's  commission 
in  the  state  militia  by  appointment  of  Governor  Downey.  In 
Masonic  circles  he  was  widely  popular.  Of  the  blue  Lodge  at 
Woodland  he  served  as  Master,  and  he  was  a  member  also  of  the 
chapter  at  Woodland  aud  of  the  commandery  at  Sacramento.  He 
died  July  8,  1900,  and  was  buried  with  Masonic  honors.  He  was 
survived  by  a  widow  and  one  daughter,  Lillian,  the  latter  being 
the  wife  of  John  Eakle,  of  Point  Richmond,  Gal.,  and  the  mother  of 


176  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

a  daughter,  Gertrude.  Mrs.  Freeman  was  Miss  Gertrude  Swain. 
She  is  represented  by  a  separate  notice  in  these  pages.  Besides 
the  daughter  mentioned,  she  bore  Major  Freeman  two  sons,  George 
and  Curry  Freeman,  both  of  whom  have  passed  away.  Genial  in 
nature,  Major  Freeman  retained  to  the  end  of  his  life  somewhat  of 
the  youthful  spirits  that  made  his  companionship  ever  a  pleasure. 
Generous  to  a  fault,  he  gave  liberally  of  his  wealth,  the  accumula- 
tion of  which  he  regarded  as  secondary  to  the  establishment  and  de- 
velopment of  enterprises  in  his  beloved  adopted  state.  Magnani- 
mous in  victory  and  calm  in  defeat,  he  was  esteemed  by  political 
foes  and  friends  alike.  His  death  was  felt  throughout  the  state  as 
a  public  bereavement. 


LEWIS  CRAIG  DRUMMOND 

Probably  no  citizen  of  Davis,  Yolo  county,  was  more  sincerely 
mourned  than  L.  C.  Drummond,  whose  demise  occurred  April  23, 
1882.  His  influence  among  his  many  friends  and  acquaintances  who 
were  fortunate  enough  to  know  him  well  was  both  permanent  and 
uplifting.  Mr.  Drummond  was  born  February  2,  1828,  in  Rahway, 
N.  J.,  where  he  was  educated  and  spent  his  early  life.  At  the 
age  of  fourteen  he  accompanied  his  parents  to  Monmouth,  N.  J., 
and  seven  years  later  found  him  on  his  way  to  the  Golden  West, 
via  Panama,  in  quest  of  a  goodly  portion  of  the  pot  of  gold  to  be 
found  "at  the  end  of  the  rainbow."  Yrouth  and  hope  are  bosom 
friends,  therefore  the  young  emigrant  gave  no  thought  to  the  hard- 
ships and  failures  to  be  met  in  his  great  venture.  But,  like  all 
brave  hearts,  he  endured  his  trials  with  quiet  perseverance  and 
courage,  recognizing  them  as  an  important  part  of  the  woof  of  the 
character  that  was  one  day  to  crown  his  life. 

In  1850  Mr.  Drummond  located  in  Mariposa  county,  Cal.,  later 
removing  to  Sacramento,  where  he  remained  until  1852,  when  he 
purchased  in  Yolo  county  three  fine  farms  aggregating  seventeen 
hundred  acres,  upon  which  he  raised  grain  and  stock  with  great 
success.  He  established  also  the  first  hardware  store  in  Davis, 
taking  as  his  partner  E.  W.  Brown.  Known  as  the  Davis  Hardware 
Company,  this  store  is  still  in  successful  operation.  Though  much 
occupied  with  his  business  interests,  Mr.  Drummond  served  for 
some  time  as  justice  of  the  peace,  and  was  always  a  zealous  worker 
in  the  Methodist  Church  of  Davis.  Of  a  truth,  if  a  duty  is  to  be 
done,  the  busy  man  will  find  time  for  it,  while  he  who  never  has 
time,  accomplishes  little  of  real  worth. 


&i/(7^U  <g  & 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  17!) 

In  1857  Mr.  Drummond  married  Miss  Eliza  Eeid,  of  Tennessee, 
whose  parents  in  1857  brought  their  family  of  fourteen  children  to 
Y'olo  county,  locating  on  the  Drummond  place.  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Drum- 
mond  were  blessed  with  four  children :  Mrs.  Jennie  D.  Read  resides 
in  Davis;  Mary  I.  Long  is  a  resident  of  New  Jersey;  M.  M.  Drum- 
mond resides  in  the  Sandwich  Islands;  and  Elizabeth  Holman  died 
in  Oakland. 

To  both  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Drummond  life  was  replete  with  oppor- 
tunities for  doing  good  work  and  for  making  happy  others  as  well 
as  themselves,  and  the  widow  continued  in  the  name  of  her  husband 
and  herself  to  perform  many  unobtrusive  acts  of  kindness  and  to 
lend  in  every  way  possible  her  assistance  toward  the  betterment  of 
the  community  until  her  death  in  1909.  For  many  years  Mr.  Drum- 
mond was  a  Mason  in  high  standing. 


MRS.  GERTRUDE  FREEMAN 

The  name  of  Mrs.  Frank  S.  Freeman  is  as  well  known  in 
Yolo  and  contiguous  counties  as  was  that  of  her  honored  hus- 
band, now  passed  from  the  scenes  of  his  earthly  activities  to  such 
reward  as  is  vouchsafed  to  those  who  pass  their  years  in  love 
for  their  fellows  and  in  labors  useful  to  humanity.  These  pages 
bear  an  extended  record  of  his  career.  Mrs.  Freeman  owns  and 
occupies  the  beautiful  home  lie  erected  on  First  street,  Woodland, 
many  years  ago,  a  residence  which  has  long  been  held  to  reflect, 
in  its  artistic  environment  and  interior  fitting,  her  own  ideals 
and  cultured  tastes.  Major  Freeman  married  in  October,  1858. 
Before  that  date  Mrs.  Freeman  was  Miss  Gertrude  Swain.  Her 
father,  George  Gorham  Swain,  died  in  Michigan.  His  widow, 
Ruth  (Kimball)  Swain,  Mrs.  Freeman's  mother,  settled  at  Wood- 
land and  there  married  Elder  Martin  and  afterward  lived  near 
her  daughter. 

George  Gorham  Swain  was  born  in  Nantucket,  Mass.,  April 
2,  1812.  When  he  was  fourteen  years  of  age  he  came  to  the 
Pacific  coast  by  way  of  Cape  Horn,  stopped  at  Santa  Barbara, 
Cal.,  and  went  on  north  to  Alaska.  He  was  at  the  time  on  a  four 
years'  whaling  cruise.  After  making  several  memorable  voyages 
he  settled  down  in  New  York  state  as  a  landsman,  and  thence 
he  went  west  to  Michigan,  locating  in  Calhoun  county  when 
Michigan  was  as  yet  only  a  territory.  There  he  lived  out  the 
remainder  of  his  days.     He  was  a  descendant  of  Mayflower  pil 


180  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

grims  and  of  the  best  New  England  Revolutionary  stock.  Ruth 
Kimball,  who  became  his  wife  and  the  mother  of  Mrs.  Freeman, 
also  of  Puritan  and  Revolutionary  ancestry,  bore  him  the  fol- 
lowing children:  Cornelia  (Mrs.  Smith),  who  died  at  Woodland 
in  1900;  Erastus  Kimball  Swain,  who  died  at  Woodland  in  1882; 
Emily,  who  is  Mrs.  Davidson  of  Woodland;  Florence,  who  mar- 
ried C.  T.  Bidwell;  Hannah  (Mrs.  John  W.  Freeman)  of  Wood- 
land; Lillian  (Mrs.  McConnell)  of  Woodland;  and  Mrs.  Major 
Freeman. 

The  birthplace  of  Mrs.  Freeman  was  Marengo,  Calhoun  county, 
Mich.  When  she  was  fourteen  years  old  she  began  to  teach 
school,  and  so  successful  was  she  that  she  was  complimented,  two 
years  later,  by  engagement  as  an  instructor  in  the  Woman's 
College  at  Lansing,  Mich.  Her  maternal  grandfather,  Erastus 
Kimball,  had  come  to  California  during  the  gold  excitement  of 
1849  and  had  become  one  of  the  owners  of  the  old  Haywood 
mine  on  Sutter  creek,  and  she  had  heard  many  wonderful  tales 
of  the  coast  regions,  which  had  aroused  in  her  a  desire  to  visit 
the  West.  So,  when  Clark  W.  Crocker  returned  from  California 
and  married  her  mother's  sister  she  sought  and  obtained  the 
consent  of  her  mother  to  accompany  the  couple  to  the  land  of 
the  setting  sun.  They  started  on  a  November  day — it  was  Thanks- 
giving Day — in  1856,  and  came  by  the  Nicaragua  route.  Immedi- 
ately after  her  arrival  the  young  educator  was  employed  to  teach 
a  school  at  Negro  Hill,  near  Folsom  City,  and  at  once  entered 
upon  the  discharge  of  her  duties  there.  In  March,  1857,  she 
resigned  the  position  and  left  Sacramento  county  for  Yolo  City 
(now  Woodland),  where  she  took  charge  of  a  school  in  a  two- 
story  building  on  the  site  of  the  Southern  Pacific  railroad  depot. 
Except  for  a  term  taught  in  the  preceding  year  by  the  Rev.  J. 
Pendegast  this  was  the  pioneer  school  in  the  village.  At  times 
it  numbered  as  many  as  sixty  pupils,  some  of  whom  came  from 
homes  six  miles  away,  either  walking  or  on  horseback — two  or 
three  on  a  horse.  The  young  teacher  was  very  popular,  and 
when,  in  1858,  she  became  the  bride  of  Major  Freeman  they  were 
reluctant  to  give  her  up.  Some  of  the  young  people  whom  she 
fondly  called  her  "boys"  and  "girls,"  afterward  became  promi- 
nent, but  none  of  them  ever  forgot  their  school  days  or  ceased 
to  remember  their  teacher  with  gratitude  and  admiration.  It 
was  her  good  fortune  to  impart  information  in  an  interesting 
manner,  so  that  her  pupils  made  rapid  progress  in  their  studies 
without  experiencing  the  drudgery  that,  under  another  teacher, 
might  have  been  inseparable  from  their  acquisition  of  knowledge. 
In  spite  of  the  greater  advantages  of  young  people  of  today,  it 
is   doubtful   if  any   of  them  learn   more   rapidly   or   enjoy   study 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  181 

more  thoroughly  than  did  those  pioneer  lads  and  lassies  who 
gladly  came  each  morning,  two  or  three  on  the  back  of  a  horse, 
or  perhaps  on  foot,  to  the  little  school  in  the  new  town  where 
Gertrude  Swain  labored  so  conscientiously  to  prepare  them  for 
their  duties  jDolitically  and  socially  in  the  part  that  would  be 
theirs  in  the  development  of  the  future  great  state  of  California. 
It  was  in  October,  1858,  that  Miss  Swain  became  the  wife  of 
Major  Freeman.  She  bore  him  three  children,  Lillian  (Mrs. 
John  Eakle  of  Point  Richmond,  Cal.)  and  George  and  Curry,  both 
of  whom  are  deceased.  Mrs.  Eakle  has  a  daughter  Gertrude, 
named  in  honor  of  her  grandmother.  In  all  the  years  of  her 
womanhood  Mrs.  Freeman  has  been  actively  interested  in  the 
spread  of  education  and  the  advancement  of  women.  She  was 
one  of  the  founders  of  the  Woodland  library  and  the  first  presi- 
dent of  the  Woodland  Library  Association.  She  and  about  a 
score  of  other  women  established  and  maintained  the  library  until 
they  turned  it,  its  books  and  its  cash  on  hand,  over  to  the  city 
when  the  time  was  ripe  for  its  perpetuation  at  municipal  expense. 
She  is  past  Matron  of  Yolo  Chapter  No.  60,  0.  F.  S.,  and  was  in 
1887  and  1888  Grand  Matron  of  the  Grand  Chapter  of  California. 
As  a  communicant  of  the  Protestant  Episcopal  Church  she  takes 
a  helpful  interest  in  the  religious  and  charitable  work  of  the 
community.  As  narrated  in  the  biographical  notice  of  her  late 
husband,  it  was  Mrs.  Freeman  who  gave  to  the  village — now 
city — of  Woodland  the  appropriate  name  by  which  it  is  so  widely 
known. 


GUSTAVE  ERNEST  SCHLOSSER 

Two  spots,  with  the  width  of  one-half  the  continent  between 
them,  have  furnished  the  environment  for  the  energetic  efforts  of 
Mr.  Schlosser,  and  these  locations  are  Hancock  county,  111.,  where 
he  lived  until  he  had  attained  his  majority,  and  Yolo  county,  Cal., 
of  which  he  has  been  a  resident  from  the  age  of  twenty-one  up 
to  the  present  time.  The  family  comes  of  German  extraction,  as 
the  name  indicates,  and  his  father,  Peter,  was  the  first  representa- 
tive of  the  family  in  the  United  States,  crossing  the  ocean  to  the 
new  world  and  settling  in  Hancock  county  in  184S.  The  land 
which  he  purchased  was  rich  and  fertile,  but  no  attempt  had  been 
made  at  cultivation  and  long  years  of  effort  were  necessary  be- 
fore gratifying  returns  could  be  secured.     The  Country  was  sparse- 


182  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

ly  settled  at  the  time  of  Ms  arrival.  A  few  years  before  he  had 
become  a  resident  of  the  county  the  Mormons,  who  had  built  a 
temple  at  Nauvoo,  were  expelled  from  that  locality  and  sought 
refuge  farther  west  subsequent  to  the  killing  of  their  leader, 
Joseph  Smith,  in  the  Hancock  county  jail  at  Carthage. 

During  the  Civil  war  Peter  Schlosser  gave  efficient  service 
as  a  soldier  to  his  adopted  country  and  when  peace  was  declared 
he  returned  to  bis  farm  and  family.  His  last  years  were  spent  in 
Hancock  county  and  his  son,  Gustave  E.,  who  was  born  there 
August  5,  1857,  was  reared  at  the  old  homestead  which  he  had 
assisted  his  father  in  bringing  under  cultivation.  During  the 
winter  montbs  he  attended  scbools,  but  bis  education  has  been 
acquired  by  self-culture  rather  than  text-book  study.  When  he 
started  out  to  seek  his  own  livelihood  in  1878  he  came  direct  to 
California  and  settled  in  Yolo  county,  where  be  worked  on  a 
farm  by  the  month.  At  tbe  expiration  of  six  years  be  returned 
to  bis  old  home  in  Illinois,  and  at  Carthage,  Hancock  county, 
March  12,  1885,  he  was  united  with  Miss  Minnie  Young-man,  a  na- 
tive of  that  state.  Accompanied  by  bis  bride,  be  came  to  Yolo 
county  and  rented  a  farm  of  one  hundred  and  sixty  acres  near 
Blacks  Station.  After  having  rented  the  place  for  two  years 
he  purchased  the  property. 

Since  becoming  the  owner  of  the  land  Mr.  Schlosser  has  made 
improvements  that  have  greatly  enhanced  its  value.  Especially 
attractive  is  the  modern  farm  house  with  its  air  of  comfort  and 
hospitality.  The  necessary  farm  buildings  have  been  erected, 
fruit  and  shade  trees  have  been  planted  and  sixty-five  acres  are 
in  alfalfa,  the  whole  forming  a  well-improved  property.  In  addi- 
tion to  the  cultivation  of  this  land  the  owner  thereof  rents  two 
hundred  additional  acres  and  engages  in  raising  wheat  and  bar- 
ley. Tbe  conduct  of  a  grain  farm  would  not  be  by  itself  wholly 
satisfactory  to  him,  for  he  is  a  believer  in  tbe  stock  business  and 
entertains  the  firm  conviction  that  every  farm  should  carry  a  sub- 
stantial supply  of  first-class  animals.  In  accordance  with  that 
theory  he  has  engaged  in  the  breeding  and  raising  of  stock  and 
has  on  the  place  some  fine  specimens  of  their  several  breeds. 

Tbe  family  of  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Schlosser  comprises  seven  chil- 
dren, and  among  these  there  are  twins,  Mollie  and  Minnie,  the 
former  now  being  the  wife  of  George  Peterson,  of  Woodland. 
Besides  the  twins  there  are  Dora,  Mrs.  Herman  Wilkendorf,  of 
Pleasant  Prairie;  Gustave,  John,  Julius  and  Henry.  Interested 
in  educational  affairs,  Mr.  Schlosser  has  served  as  a  member  of 
the  school  board  for  a  number  of  years.  For  about  eight  years 
he  served  as  a  deputy  sheriff.  In  politics  he  votes  with  the  Re- 
publican party.     He  is  a  leading  worker  in   the   Grafton   Lodge, 


;<y<  ^V  /iua^va-r^ 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  185 

I.  0.  0.  F.,  and  has  passed  through  all  of  the  chairs.  On  the 
occasion  of  the  convention  of  the  sovereign  grand  lodge  at  San 
Francisco  he  was  chosen  a  delegate  from  the  home  lodge.  With 
his  wife  he  holds  membership  in  the  Lodge  of  Rebekahs  in  Wood- 
land, while  his  fraternal  associations  are  enlarged  through  mem- 
bership in  Woodland  Encampment  No.  71,  I.  0.  0.  F.,  and  the 
Herman  Sons. 


JOHN  W.   FREEMAN 

For  many  years  associated  with  the  early  and  later  develop- 
ment of  Yolo  county,  Cal.,  John  W.  Freeman,  born  in  1842, 
retained  an  important  place  among  the  citizens  of  this  part  of 
the  state  until  his  death,  which  occurred  on  Christmas  Day,  1906. 
Then  almost  twenty  years  had  elapsed  since  he  had  located  in 
Nevada  as  a  rancher  and  stockman.  In  Woodland,  however,  he 
had  had  a  beautiful  residence  which  he  had  made  his  home,  ever 
giving  to  the  welfare  of  the  city  and  surrounding  country  the 
support  which  might  have  been  expected  from  one  of  bis  gener- 
ously helpful  nature. 

A  native  of  Buchanan  county,  Mo.,  Mr.  Freeman  was  left  an 
orphan  at  an  early  age  and  endured  many  hardships  and  priva- 
tions which  taught  him  that  self-reliance  which  stood  him  in  such 
good  stead  in  his  later  life.  At  the  age  of  twelve  years  he  began 
to  acquire  a  knowledge  of  printing  in  a  printing  office  in  Nebraska 
City,  established  and  owned  by  the  Hon.  J.  Sterling  Morton,  in 
which  he  labored  faithfully  four  years.  Deciding  to  follow  bis 
brother,.  Major  Frank  S.  Freeman,  to  California,  he  came  overland 
to  the  state  in  1860,  and  was  employed  as  a  clerk  by  bis  brother, 
in  the  latter 's  store  at  Yolo  City,  now  Woodland.  Four  years 
later  he  entered  into  partnership  with  his  brother,  and  the  two 
established  a  general  merchandise  enterprise  at  Lakeport,  Lake 
county,  Cal.  Two  years  later  they  sold  out  and  opened  a  store 
in  Cacheville.  Yolo  county.  After  four  more  years  had  passed 
Major  Freeman  withdrew  from  the  enterprise  and  A.  J.  Hall 
became  John  W.  Freeman's  partner,  and  the  new  linn  existed 
about  four  years.  Then  Mr.  Freeman  sold  his  interest  in  this 
store  and  again  entered  into  partnership  with  his  brother,  the 
two  conducting  the  Pioneer  store  at  Cacheville.  About  that  time 
they  opened  a  branch  store  at  Capay  and  a  hardware  and  agri- 
cultural machinery  business  in  the  College  block,  Woodland.  The 
brothers  continued  in  business  until  1885,  when  John  W.  Freeman 
sold  out,  after  which   he  improved  a  large  ranch   in  Capay  valley, 


186  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

raising  fruit  and  stock.  In  1888  he  located  in  Nevada,  where  he 
bought  an  extensive  stock  ranch  in  the  sink  of  the  Carson  river, 
fourteen  miles  from  Fallon  and  twenty-seven  miles  from  the 
Southern  Pacific  Railroad.  He  eventually  owned  12,000  acres  of 
land,  a  part  of  which  had  been  under  irrigation  from  the  old 
ditches  until  1905,  when  the  great  government  canal  was  com- 
pleted, the  government  still  recognizing  that  right.  He  devoted 
his  attention  to  the  cultivation  of  alfalfa  and  the  raising  of  cattle, 
sheep  and  horses,  having  thousands  of  head  grazing  on  the  broad 
lands  of  his  ranch.  In  his  work  he  met  with  the  most  gratifying 
results  and  was  justly  mentioned  as  one  of  the  most  successful 
stockmen  of  the  West,  his  indomitable  energy  and  strict  applica- 
tion to  business  having  won  him  his  competency  and  his  proud 
place  among  his  eotenrporaries. 

In  Woodland,  October  2,  1867,  Mr.  Freeman  married  Hannah 
Swain,  sister  of  Mrs.  Gertrude  Freeman,  who  was  born  in  Mar- 
shall, Mich.,  the  daughter  of  George  G.  and  Ruth  (Kimball)  Swain. 
After  spending  the  first  thirteen  years  of  her  life  in  Calhoun 
county,  Mrs.  Freeman  came  to  California  by  way  of  the  Isthmus 
of  Panama  in  1862,  and  was  educated  at  Hesperian  College, 
Woodland.  She  is  a  woman  of  culture  and  refinement,  widely 
known  for  her  generosity  of  heart  and  for  the  kindly  hospitality 
of  her  home.  She  bore  Mr.  Freeman  two  children:  Mary  was 
born  in  Yolo  county  and  was  educated  at  Stanford  University, 
where  she  was  graduated  in  1897  with  the  B.  S.  degree.  She  is 
now  the  wife  of  John  H.  Crabbe,  an  attorney  of  San  Francisco. 
John  Ernest  Freeman  was  a  graduate  of  St.  Mathew's  Academy 
at  San  Mateo.  While  manager  of  the  Freeman  ranch  in  Nevada 
he  became  very  ill  and  came  to  San  Francisco,  where  he  died 
June  22,  1912,  at  the  age  of  twenty-eight.  In  January,  1909,  he 
married  Elizabeth  Williams,  a  daughter  of  Senator  W.  W.  Wil- 
liams of  Nevada. 

Fraternally  John  W.  Freeman  was  a  Mason  of  the  Knight 
Templar  degree,  and  was  a  member  of  the  Knights  of  Pythias. 
Politically  he  was  a  staunch  Republican.  Mrs.  Freeman  is  a 
member  of  the  Order  of  Eastern  Star  and  is  a  past  matron  of 
Yolo  Chapter  No.  60.  She  attends  the  Protestant  Episcopal  Church 
and  assists  all  of  the  varied  interests  of  that  organization  at 
Woodland.  With  her  sister  she  was  active  in  the  establishment 
of  the  city  library  which,  when  it  was  popular  and  prosperous  to 
a  degree,  was  turned  by  its  management  over  to  the  city  of  Wood- 
land. Since  her  husband's  death  she  has  retained  the  ownership 
of  the  Freeman  ranch  in  Nevada,  which  is  under  her  management, 
and  she  also  has  valuable  property  in  Woodland  and  in  San 
Francisco. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  187 

HENRY  CROCKETT  CULTON,  D.  D. 

Notwithstanding  the  mists  of  obscurity  out  of  which  all  gene- 
alogical records  emerge,  there  is  abundant  evidence  that  the 
Culton  family  remained  for  many  generations  in  the  highlands 
of  Scotland,  that  they  embraced  the  Calvinistic  doctrines  ex- 
pounded by  their  original  exponent,  also  that  during  the  era  of 
religious  persecution  in  their  native  country  they  were  forced  to 
flee  for  their  lives,  thus  establishing  the  name  in  the  north  of 
Ireland,  whence  in  the  colonial  history  of  our  own  country  some 
of  the  descendants  emigrated  to  Virginia.  Later  generations  fol- 
lowed the  tide  of  settlement  toward  the  further  west.  James 
Culton,  a  Virginian  by  birth  and  education,  spent  his  last  days 
in  Tennessee.  The  next  generation  was  represented  by  Alexander 
Culton,  also  a  Virginian  by  birth,  but  from  early  manhood  a  resi- 
dent of  Tennessee.  For  some  years  he  engaged  in  operating  a 
plantation  near  Athens,  McMinn  county,  near  the  state  lines  of 
North  Carolina  and  Georgia  and  later  he  removed  to  an  adjoining 
county,  where  he  settled  near  Charleston.  His  last  days  were 
passed  in  that  locality,  and  there  also  occurred  the  death  of  his 
wife,  Sarah  (Newman)  Culton,  a  native  of  Tennessee,  her  father, 
Robert  Newman,  having  been  a  descendant  of  German  ancestry. 

Out  of  nine  children  in  the  parental  family  all  but  one  at- 
tained years  of  maturity,  but  only  three  now  survive,  one  of 
these  being  Rev.  Henry  Crockett,  D.  D.,  pastor  of  the  Presbyterian 
Church  of  Winters  since  December  of  1877  and  widely  recognized 
as  a  theologian  of  fine  mental  powers,  an  honor  to  the  denomina- 
tion which  he  represents  and  a  leader  in  the  community  where  for 
thirty-five  years  he  has  made  his  home.  In  boyhood  he  lived 
in  southeastern  Tennessee,  first  near  Athens  and  then  near 
Charleston,  and  after  he  had  graduated  from  the  Calhoun  academy 
he  entered  the  Cumberland  University  at  Lebanon,  Tenn.,  from 
which  in  1874  he  received  the  degree  of  A.  B.  Remaining  in  the 
institution,  he  began  a  course  in  theology  and  in  1875  he  was 
ordained  to  the  ministry  by  the  Memphis  presbytery  of  the  Cum- 
berland Presbyterian  denomination.  Called  to  the  pastorate  of  the 
Vance  Street  Church  in  Memphis,  Tenn.,  he  continued  there  from 
December,  1874,  until  November,  1S7(>,  and  at  the  latter  dale  became 
pastor  of  the  Cumberland  Presbyterian  Church  at  Cleveland, 
Tenn.,  in  his  home  county  and  only  twelve  miles  from  his  father's 
place.  For  one  year  he  remained  in  that  position  and  then 
came  to  California,  where  he  has  been  pastor  of  the  church  at 
Winters  since  December  of  1877,  meantime  giving  to  this  important 
charge  the  fullness  of  bis  remarkable  mental  powers  and  the  self- 
sacrificing  devotion  of  his  keen  spiritual  vision. 


188  HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

The  history  of  the  church  extends  back  as  far  as  1863.  Ac- 
cording to  such  records  as  are  obtainable,  the  congregation  had 
services  at  Pine  Grove  schoolhouse,  one  mile  west  of  town,  as  early 
as  the  year  named.  After  two  years  they  began  to  hold  their 
services  in  the  Wolfskill  schoolhouse  across  Putah  creek  in  Solano 
county.  During  1875  a  house  of  worship  was  erected  on  Russell 
and  Second  streets,  Winters,  and  this  building,  with  improvements 
and  modifications,  is  still  in  use  by  the  congregation.  The  first 
pastor,  Rev.  T.  M.  Johnson,  served  the  congregation  from  Monti- 
cello  and  at  the  close  of  the  year  1877  Dr.  Culton  became  the  first 
resident  minister,  beginning  a  pastorate  that  has  been  markedly 
successful  and  far-reaching  in  influence.  Today  the  congregation 
is  perhaps  as  large  as  any  in  Winters,  while  in  the  breadth  of  its 
benefactions  and  the  extent  of  its  missionary  services  it  has  been 
surpassed  by  none.  About  1902  the  degree  of  D.  D.  was  con- 
ferred upon  the  pastor  by  his  alma  mater.  Frequently  he  was 
honored  with  election  as  moderator  of  the  presbytery  and  he  was 
occupying  that  position  in  the  Pacific  synod  when  the  union  of 
the  Presbyterian  denomination  with  the  Cumberland  branch  was 
accomplished,  after  which  he  preached  the  opening  sermon  of  the 
United  Synod  at  Mount  Hermon,  this  state.  As  a  result  of  this 
amalgamation  since  1906  his  congregation  no  longer  claims  Cum- 
berland Presbyterian  affiliations,  but  forms  a  part  of  the  larger 
brotherhood  known  as  the  Presbyterian  Church  of  the  United 
States  of  America.  Among  his  parishioners  he  is  greatly  beloved, 
while  his  influence  among  other  denominations  has  increased  with 
the  passing  years  as  the  full  extent  of  his  devotion  to  Christianity 
has  been  recognized  with  growing  appreciation.  As  early  as  1884 
he  embraced  the  tenets  of  Prohibition  and  since  then,  by  precept 
no  less  than  example,  he  has  given  the  weight  of  his  influence  to  the 
cause,  believing  that  the  sale  of  intoxicating  liquors  is  a  curse  to 
our  country  and  should  be  sternly  repressed  by  the  aid  of  the  law. 
The  city  of  Winters  voted  "dry"  in  1904,  and  is  still  dry  and 
prosperous. 

The  marriage  of  Dr.  Culton  and  Miss  Martha  E.  Crawford  was 
solemnized  at  Charleston,  Tenn.,  January  2,  1877,  the  bride  having 
been  a  native  of  Greene  county,  Tenn.,  and  a  daughter  of  Rev. 
W.  H.  Crawford,  D.  D.,  an  honored  and  useful  minister  in  the 
Cumberland  Presbyterian  denomination.  After  years  of  acceptable 
and  helpful  ministerial  service  in  Tennessee,  removing  to  Cali- 
fornia Dr.  Crawford  entered  the  ministry  in  this  state  and  it  was 
while  supplying  a  pulpit  at  Newman,  Stanislaus  county,  that  he 
passed  away.  There  were  nine  children  in  the  family  of  Dr.  and 
Mrs.  Culton  and  seven  of  these  are  still  living,  as  follows :  Maud, 
who  married  N.  A.  McArthur,  of  Winters;  Mrs.  Sarah  Owen  and 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  191 

Mrs.  Clemmie  Stone,  both  of  Colton,  this  state;  Perry  and  Carroll, 
who  are  engaged  in  the  horticultural  industry  at  Winters  under  the 
firm  name  of  Culton  Brothers;  Gertrude  and  Lenis,  who  remain 
with  their  parents. 


CHARLES   COIL 

To  recount  even  a  few  of  the  experiences  of  this  pioneer  of 
1849  is  to  realize  anew  the  hardships  incident  to  the  early  settle- 
ment of  the  west  and  to  appreciate  afresh  the  self-sacrificing 
labors  of  our  forefathers.  Theirs  the  toil  that  we  might  reap 
the  reward;  theirs  the  incessant  labor  amid  discomforts  in  order- 
that  we  might  enjoy  the  fruits  of  a  high  civilization;  and  theirs 
the  years  of  self-denial  in  order  that  generations  yet  unborn 
might  find  life's  cup  of  joy  filled  to  overflowing  in  this  goodly 
land  beside  the  sunset  sea.  The  trite  adage  that  he  is  a  public 
benefactor,  "who  causes  two  blades  of  grass  to  grow  where  one 
grew  before,"  finds  a  noteworthy  exemplification  in  the  activi- 
ties of  Mr.  Coil,  who  by  his  own  wise  judgment  proved  the  pos- 
sibilities of  the  soil  of  Yolo  county,  tested  its  adaptability  to  varied 
crops  and  won  financial  success  as  a  tiller  of  the  soil.  When  he 
took  up  farming  he  was  one  of  the  very  first  men  in  Yolo  county 
to  raise  grain.  The  venture,  made  at  considerable  financial  risk, 
proved  so  successful  that  others  were  quick  to  follow  his  example. 
Nor  was  this  the  only  agricultural  enterprise  in  which  his  was 
the  risk  and  to  others  came  the  returns  of  his  experiments.  Such 
service  proves  the  value  of  a  man  to  his  community  and  his  worth 
was  appreciated  by  all  who  were  familiar  with  his  forceful  efforts. 

Sorrow  and  bereavement  cast  their  shadow  over  the  early 
years  of  Charles  Coil  and  thrust  upon  him  the  necessity  of  self- 
support  ere  an  education  had  been  acquired.  A  member  of  an 
old  family  of  New  York,  he  was  born  in  1828  at  Verona,  Oneida 
county,  and  lost  both  his  father  and  his  mother  while  he  was  yet 
a  mere  child.  At  the  age  of  seventeen  years  he  went  west  as  far 
as  Wisconsin  and  settled  at  Racine,  where  he  secured  employment 
with  S.  C.  Tuckerman,  a  grain  dealer.  Upon  learning  of  the  dis- 
covery of  gold  in  California  he  immediately  arranged  his  plans 
for  removal  to  the  coast.  Early  in  the  spring  of  1849  he  started 
across  the  plains  with  a  party  that  traveled  with  oxen  and  wagons. 
August  13,  1849,  he  reached  Hangtown  (Placerville),  where  he 
joined  an  excited  and  cosmopolitan  throng  of  gold-seekers.     Such 


192  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

work,  however,  did  not  satisfy  Mm  nor  did  he  meet  with  any 
success  therein. 

While  looking  for  employment  at  Sacramento,  a  chance  en- 
counter with  Matt  Harbin,  the  owner  of  the  Hardy  grant,  gave 
Mr.  Coil  an  opportunity  to  enter  upon  ranch,  affairs.  Mr.  Harbin 
not  only  engaged  him,  but  also  furnished  him  with  a  horse  so  that 
he  might  ride  to  the  grant.  After  a  brief  and  pleasant  experience 
as  a  ranch  hand,  he  embarked  in  the  butcher  business  at  Sacramento 
with  F.  W.  Fratt  and  John  McNulty.  The  stock  was  bought  from 
the  Harbin  ranch  and  the  venture  netted  its  projectors  a  neat  profit. 
Returning  east  via  Panama  in  1852,  Mr.  Coil  drove  a  herd  of  cattle 
across  the  plains  the  following  year  and  then  leased  a  part  of  the 
Harbin  ranch.  Later  the  property  came  into  his  possession  and 
since  then  has  been  known  as  the  Coil  place.  To  the  house  he 
erected  there  he  brought  his  bride  in  1858  and  there  he  conducted 
large  stock  enterprises  in  partnership  with  John  McNulty  and 
W.  B.  Todhunter.  With  Gabriel  Brown  as  a  partner  he  bought  the 
Thomas  0.  Larkin  grant,  situated  on  the  present  site  of  Willow, 
Glenn  county,  and  the  two  men  engaged  there  in  the  cattle  business 
for  a  number  of  years. 

The  year  1862  was  a  disastrous  one  for  settlers  on  account  of 
the  floods.  Even  more  serious  was  the  drought  of  1864,  and  Mr. 
Coil  was  among  the  sufferers  both  from  the  flood  and  the  drought. 
A  part  of  his  cattle  he  saved  by  taking  them  to  Nevada,  but  to  do 
this  he  had  to  mortgage  his  land.  Later  he  found  himself  unable 
to  redeem  his  Willow  land,  which  was  foreclosed.  In  a  desperate 
effort  to  save  the  old  homestead  he  spent  his  last  dollar.  In  des- 
peration he  asked  D.  0.  Mills  of  San  Francisco  for  a  loan.  On 
being  asked  how  much  he  needed,  he  answered  $10,000,  and  Mr. 
Mills  gave  the  amount  to  him  with  no  other  security  than  his  note. 
Purchasing  teams,  he  engaged  in  trading  between  Sacramento  and 
Salt  Lake.  The  merchandise  taken  to  Utah  would  be  sold  there, 
the  money  used  for  the  purchase  of  cattle,  which  he  would  drive 
back  to  the  coast.  The  tide  began  to  turn  in  his  financial  affairs. 
Little  by  little  he  paid  off  his  debts.  Finally  he  was  able  to  resume 
farming.  Then  he  began  to  buy  more  land.  His  possessions  in- 
creased to  such  an  extent  that  at  the  time  of  his  death  he  owned 
four  thousand  acres,  some  of  which  was  only  one  and  one-half 
miles  from  Woodland. 

The  marriage  of  Mr.  Coil  and  Ellen  W.  Pond  was  solemnized 
near  Cacheville,  Yolo  county,  March  8,  1858.  Mrs.  Coil  was  born 
at  Bristol,  Vt.,  being  the  only  child  of  Samuel  P.  and  Ann  (Greg- 
ory) Pond,  likewise  natives  of  Vermont.  At  the  time  of  the 
discovery  of  gold  Mr.  Pond  relinquished  his  farming  enterprises 
in  New  England,  and  came,   in  1849,  via  Panama,  to   California, 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  193 

where  he  worked  in  the  mines.  During  1852  his  wife  joined  him 
and  he  established  a  home  on  Cache  creek.  In  1856  his  daugh- 
ter, who  had  been  a  student  in  the  Townsend  Academy  in  Ver- 
mont, came  by  way  of  the  isthmus  to  join  her  parents  in  Yolo 
county.  About  that  time  Mr.  Pond  bought  a  farm  just  east  of 
Woodland.  When  he  sold  that  place  and  retired  from  agricul- 
tural labors,  he  settled  at  Woodland,  where  he  died  at  the  age  of 
seventy-eight  years.     His  wife  lived  to  be  seventy-two. 

A  worthy  life  came  to  an  end  when  New  Year's  Day  of  1892 
witnessed  the  passing  from  earth  of  Charles  Coil.  His  had  been 
a  kindly  existence,  simple,  sincere  and  earnest,  and  he  had  borne 
life's  disappointments,  as  its  triumphs,  with  dignity  and  honor. 
He  was  survived  by  his  widow,  who  has  since  spent  much  of  her 
time  in  Berkeley,  the  home  of  their  youngest  child,  Irene.  The 
older  son,  LeRoy,  resides  at  No.  548  Second  street,  Woodland,  and 
the  younger  son,  Herbert  E.,  has  made  his  home  on  the  old  farm 
so  long  identified  with  the  activities  of  the  father.  The  years 
that  have  come  and  gone  since  Mr.  Coil  entered  into  eternal  rest 
have  not  dimmed  his  memory  in  the  hearts  of  relatives  and  friends. 
His  true  worth  is  now>  as  it  was  then,  appreciated  by  associates 
in  business,  neighbors  on  ranches,  by  co-workers  in  the  Repub- 
lican party,  by  comrades  in  the  Ancient  Order  of  United  Work- 
men, and  among  the  Knights  of  Pythias,  and  indeed  by  all  in 
whose  breasts  God  has  implanted  a  deep  respect  for  true  prin- 
ciples of  manhood. 


JUDGE  ROBERT   H.  BUCKINGHAM 

As  long  as  Washington,  or  Broderick  (or  whatever  the  pretty 
riparian  town  on  the  bank  of  the  Rio  Sacramento  just  opposite 
the  state  capital  may  be  called),  exists,  Judge  Robert  H.  Buck- 
ingham will  be  remembered.  As  a  fisherman  on  the  river,  as  a 
fish  commissioner  on  duty  throughout  the  state  of  California,  as 
a  justice  of  the  peace  in  his  township  and  as  an  all-around  citizen 
of  Yolo  county  he  made  good.  The  earliest  thing  that  occurred 
in  his  life  was  his  birth  at  New  Haven,  Conn.,  in  1834.  Naturally 
other  things  occurred  there  during  his  seventeen  years'  residence 
in  the  old  Nutmeg  State,  but  they  will  not  be  recorded  here.  When 
he  left  his  native  city  he  was  on  his  way  to  gather  some  of  the 
gold  he  heard  was  to  be  found  in  distant  California.  The  steam 
ship   Daniel   Webster,   a   historical   old  Atlantic  liner,   carried   him 


194  HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

and  about  eight  hundred  of  the  west-bound  tourists  down  to  Grey- 
town,  making  their  way  by  Lake  Nicaragua  to  the  Pacific  side. 
It  cannot  be  told  how  many  of  that  number  reached  San  Fran- 
cisco, but  the  subject  of  this  sketch  landed  safely  December  1, 
1851.  After  trying  his  "  'printice  hand"  at  mining,  however, 
without  accumulating  much  of  the  yellow  mineral,  he  found  himself 
where  he  is  at  present — in  Washington,  in  1852.  Salmon  were 
running  freely  in  the  clear  waters  of  the  Sacramento  then,  and 
the  young  man  from  Connecticut  went  after  them,  and  during 
many  following  years  he  hauled  in  numberless  nets  full  of  the 
noble  quinnat.  In  fact,  he  has  been  connected  with  that  industry 
nearly  all  his  California  life.  It  was  a  profitable  business  when 
fish  sold  from  the  boats  at  forty  and  fifty  cents  per  pound,  and 
a  big  salmon  could  produce  many  marketable  pounds  of  the  deli- 
cacy. When  the  fishers  packed  for  the  mines  they  used  ice  that 
had  been  shipped  around  the  Horn  all  the  way  from  Maine  or 
Massachusetts,  and  sold  here  at  fifteen  cents  a  pound.  Later  on 
the  ice  was  brought  from  Alaska. 

In  1883  Judge  Buckingham  was  appointed  a  state  fish  com- 
missioner, serving  four  years  as  president  of  the  board — and  not 
a  better  man  for  the  place  could  have  been  found.  Under  his 
management  the  industry  flourished,  there  being  over  fifteen  hun- 
dred fishing  boats  on  the  river.  In  1889  he  engaged  in  the  grocery 
business  in  Washington  and  continued  therein  for  ten  years.  He 
served  as  justice  of  the  peace  of  Washington  township  for  twelve 
years.  His  political  faith  is  Democratic  and  for  a  long  time  he 
was  an  active  member  of  the  Democratic  state  central  committee. 
He  was  married  in  Sandwich,  111.,  in  1861,  to  Miss  Sarah  Jane 
White,  a  native  of  Washington  county,  N.  Y.,  and  they  celebrated 
their  golden  wedding  in  1911.  Their  children  are  Fred  M.  and 
Henry.  Fred  married  Miss  Annie  Kemler,  and  they  live  in  Para- 
dise valley,  Nevada;  Frederick,  Emilie  and  Jeanette  are  their  chil- 
dren. Henry,  who  resides  in  Washington,  married  Miss  Maggie 
Fisher,  and  to  them  were  born  Frank,  Mildred,  Florence  and 
Helen. 

Judge  Buckingham  has  retired  from  business  and  in  his 
pleasant  home  in  Washington,  on  the  green  banks  of  the  river 
he  loves,  he  passes  a  quiet  life.  He  is  still  interested  in  the  sport 
and  old  Izaak  Walton  himself  was  not  more  keen  to  seek  the 
"place  of  the  finny  prey."  Many  prominent  professional  men  of 
the  state  may  remember  with  pleasure  their  fishing  trips  with  the 
judge.  With  such  a  guide  and  companion  they  had  no  trouble 
in  catching  a  fine  string.  Judge  Buckingham  is  now  the  oldest 
resident  of  Washington,  where  he  has  been  in  business  since 
Julv,    1852. 


y^lJ/^Z^^c^y 


.. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  197 

GEORGE  DICKSON  STEPHENS 

From  the  initial  period  of  American  occupancy  of  California 
until  his  demise  more  than  fifty  years  later  George  Dickson  Steph- 
ens was  intimately  identified  with  the  upbuilding  of  the  great  west 
and  contributed  in  especially  .large  degree  to  the  development  of 
Yolo  county.  The  record  of  his  life  epitomizes  the  romance  of  the 
frontier.  Time  itself,  painting  with  glowing  colors  upon  the  can- 
vas of  the  past,  reveals  the  sturdy  figure  of  a  youth  crossing _the 
plains  in  company  with  an  expedition  of  Argonauts  eager  to  find  the 
hidden  gold  of  unknown  mines,  but  little  dreaming  that  it  was  to  be 
through  the  cultivation  of  the  fertile  and  undeveloped  soil  of  the 
state  they  would  find  the  gold  of  their  hopes.  The  party  of  gold- 
seekers  began  their  journey  from  Cooper  county,  Mo.,  May  10, 
1849,  and  arrived  in  Sacramento  August  6,  having  pushed  their 
way  across  the  plains  with  a  persistence  that  faltered  not  for 
weariness  or  perils.  The  new  country  with  its  cosmopolitan  popu- 
lation presented  a  remarkable  contrast  to  the  environment  familiar 
to  the  early  years  of  the  young  man.  In  a  region  remote  from  the 
scenes  of  boyhood  and  the  homes  of  kindred,  with  no  relative  near 
him  excepting  his  older  brother,  John  Dickson  (long  the  confidante 
of  all  business  undertakings  and  the  comrade  of  many  frontier  ex- 
peditions), he  struggled  toward  independence  and  success  and  laid 
the  foundation  of  the  interests  that  now  make  his  name  one  of  the 
most  prominent  in  the  annals  of  Yolo  county. 

The  life  which  this  narrative  depicts  began  in  Cooper  county, 
Mo..  July  31,  1828,  and  closed  in  Yolo  county,  Cal.,  December  22, 
1901.  Many  of  the  qualities  that  individualized  a  forceful  personal- 
ity came  as  an  inheritance  from  Scotch  and  Welsh  ancestors.  The 
family  genealogy  indicates  that  Peter  Stephens,  who  was  born  in 
Pennsylvania  during  the  latter  part  of  the  seventeenth  century, 
founded  the  village  of  Stephensburg  in  that  state.  The  next  gen- 
eration was  represented  by  Peter,  Jr.,  who  married  Johanna  Chris 
man  and  moved  to  Wythe  county,  Ya.  Out  of  a  family  comprising 
seven  sons  and  one  daughter  it  is  a  noteworthy  fact  that  every  son 
became  a  Revolutionary  soldier  and  two  died  the  death  of  patriots 
while  fighting  on  the  battlefield  for  liberty  and  independence.  One 
of  these  young  heroes  was  Joseph  Stephens,  who  in  1801  settled  in 
Wayne  county,  Ky.,  thence  moved  to  Tennessee  in  1815  and  during 
November  of  1817  traveled  by  wagon  to  Missouri,  settling  thirteen 
miles  south  of  Boonville,  Cooper  county,  where  he  acquired  slaves 
and  a  fine  tract  of  land.  P^or  years  be  contributed  to  the  agricnl 
tural  upbuilding  of  that  community.  His  death  occurred  May  7. 
1836,  near  Bunceton.  Twelve  children  bad  been  born  of  his  mar- 
riage to  Rhoda  Cole.     By  bis  second  wife.  Catharine  Dickson,   be 


198  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

was  the  father  of  nine  children,  namely:  John  D.,  who  for  years 
before  his  death  was  an  influential  banker  of  Woodland,  Cal. ; 
George  D.,  whose  name  introduces  this  article;  Andrew  J.,  Thomas 
H.  B.,  Margaret,  Alpha,  Harriet,  Isabella  and  Lee  Ann. 

As  an  educative  preparation  for  life's  activities  the  environ- 
ment of  George  Dickson  Stephens  in  youth  was  most  efficacious. 
Self-reliance  and  persistence  were  learned  by  actual  experience.  In 
addition,  observation  taught  him  lessons  which  could  not  have  been 
learned  in  school.  Gold  was  discovered  in  California  just  at  the 
time  when,  standing  at  the  threshold  of  manhood,  he  was  pondering 
the  subject  of  a  permanent  occupation  as  a  means  of  livelihood. 
He  was  therefore  in  a  mood  to  be  fascinated  by  the  unknown  oppor- 
tunities of  the  west  and  with  ardor  he  entered  upon  the  expedition 
made  up  for  the  coast.  As  his  primary  object  in  seeking  this  state 
had  been  to  search  for  gold,  he  immediately  began  to  work  as  a 
miner  and  prospector  and  established  temporary  headquarters  suc- 
cessively at  Mormon  Island,  Missouri  bar  on  the  American  river 
and  at  ilangtown.  The  winter  of  1849-50  he  spent  with  others  in 
a  cabin  on  the  Sacramento  river.  During  the  spring  of  1850  he 
mined  on  the  middle  fork  of  the  American  river.  Returning  to 
Sacramento  on  the  -1th  of  July,  he  soon  began  to  buy  cattle  and 
mules  from  arriving  emigrants.  '  These  he  drove  down  to  Cache 
creek,  where  in  1850  he  made  a  camp  on  what  he  supposed  to  be 
government  land.  Soon,  however,  he  found  that  it  was  a  portion 
of  the  Berryessa  grant.  With  his  brother,  John  D.,  he  acquired 
the  property  in  the  same  year  and  put  up  au  adobe  house,  the  only 
building  of  the  Hnd  now  remaining  in  Yolo  county.  To  this  original 
adobe  has  been  added  a  comfortable  home  where  the  family  gather 
to  have  their  good  times. 

In  addition  to  the  purchase  of  the  Rancho  de  Capay  the  broth- 
ers promoted  the  Cottonwood  Ditch  Company,  later  known  as  the 
Capay  Ditch  Company(  which  ultimately  was  merged  into  the  Yolo 
County  Consolidated  Water  Company)  and  now  known  as  the  Yolo 
Power  and  Water  Company.  With  the  securing  of  irrigation  it  was 
possible  to  raise  grain  profitably  and  from  that  the  brothers  drifted 
into  live  stock  operations,  raising  horses  and  mules,  Durham  cattle 
and  Poland-China  hogs,  also  sheep  of  such  fine  quality  that  they 
won  many  premiums  at  local  and  state  fairs.  While  building  up  a 
remarkable  business  in  stock  and  grain  George  D.  Stephens  at  the 
same  time  identified  himself  with  the  material  upbuilding  of  the 
community,  promoted  the  maintenance  of  good  schools,  helped  to 
secure  first-class  teachers  for  the  country  schools,  and  also  wielded 
a  wide  influence  as  a  Democrat,  although  he  uever  consented  to 
become  a  candidate  for  office,  nor  was  he  willing  to  accept  party 
favors  of  any  kind.     During  1872  he  married  Miss  Laura  Wilcox- 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  199 

son,  who  was  born  in  Fayette,  Howard  county,  Mo.,  the  daughter  of 
Joseph  and  Amanda  (Stapleton)  Wilcoxson,  of  Kentucky.  She 
died  in  1875,  leaving  two  daughters,  Kate  L.  and  Josephine.  The 
latter  is  the  wife  of  Russell  Harriman  and  lives  in  Los  Angeles, 
Cal.  The  former  was  elected  secretary  of  the  Stephens  Agricul- 
tural &  Livestock  Company,  the  president  having  been  George 
Dickson  Stephens  from  the  organization  of  the  concern  until  his 
death,  December  22,  1901.  Since  then  his  eldest  son,  by  a  later  mar- 
riage, was  elected  to  the  office  his  father's  death  vacated.  The 
second  marriage  of  Mr.  Stephens  took  place  May  27,  1877,  and 
united  him  with  Miss  Nannie  Lucas,  a  native  of  Buchanan  county, 
Mo.,  and  a  daughter  of  G.  J.  Lucas,  who  in  1868  brought  his  family 
to  California.  Of  this  union  there  are  the  following-named  sons 
and  daughters:  John  L.,  president  of  the  Stephens  Agricultural  & 
Livestock  Company;  Mrs.  Louise  M.  Plummer,  of  San  Francisco; 
Sarah,  wife  of  Capt.  Charles  Gordon,  U.  S.  A.;  Margaret;  Mrs. 
Elizabeth  Needham,  of  Sacramento,  Cal.;  George  D.,  now  in  Ari- 
zona; Frank  Warren,  of  Woodland;  Ben  Gray,  of  Winters;  Will- 
iam Fulton,  Thomas  Jackson,  and  Paul,  who  remain  on  the  estate. 
The  property  comprises  about  eight  thousand  acres  of  land  in  Yolo 
county  and  has  been  provided  with  every  equipment  for  the  care  of 
stock,  in  which  a  specialty  is  now  made  of  Shorthorn  Durham  cattle 
and  of  Shropshire  sheep. 

Since  the  death  of  Mr.  Stephens,  to  whose  far-seeing  ability 
must  lie  attributed  the  acquisition  of  the  vast  tracts  in  Yolo  county, 
the  estate  has  remained  intact  ami  conducted  as  an  incorporated 
business  has  brought  gratifying  returns  to  the  heirs.  The  marvel- 
ous harmony  that  pervades  the  family,  an  admirable  and  most  un- 
usual feature  in  such  instances,  causes  each  member  to  place  im- 
plicit confidence  in  the  others  and  to  make  sacrifices  if  necessary 
for  their  good.  A  bond  of  affection  and  trust  exists  between  all  the 
members  of  the  family  that  is  rarely  shown  so  strongly  or  expressed 
so  positively  in  even  the  most  minute  details  of  daily  activities. 
This  spirit  of  devotion  and  confidence  is  a  heritage  from  the  father, 
whose  home  was  to  him  the  fairest  spot  on  earth  and  whose  great 
heart  encompassed  each  child  with  a  boundless  affection.  Deep  as 
was  his  interest  in  agriculture,  progressive  as  he  was  in  promoting 
the  quality  of  live  stock  raised  in  the  county,  engrossed  as  he  was 
in  schools  and  other  public  institutions  of  worth,  interested  as  lie 
was  in  the  directorate  of  the  Bank  of  Woodland  and  prominent  in 
many  movements  of  permanent  value  to  the  county,  it  was  in  his 
home,  surrounded  by  his  family  and  extending  a  gracious  hospital- 
ity to  friends,  that  he  was  at  his  best  and  there  his  generous  na- 
ture, unselfish  spirit  ami  honorable  character  shone  forth  with  a 
dignified  beauty  that  lends  a  permanent  value  to  the  record  of  hi-- 


200  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

life.  To  his  children  he  taught  precious  lessons  by  example  and 
precept.  From  him  they  learned  how  to  bear  disappointment  with 
fortitude,  how  to  secure  victory  with  moderation,  how  to  suffer 
svith  patience,  iu  short,  how  to  live  with  courage  and  how  to  die 
with  honor. 


THOMAS  J.  BELSHE 

A  native  of  California,  his  birth  having  occurred  in  Woodland, 
Y'olo  county,  February  9,  1856,  Mr.  Belshe  is  widely  known  as 
a  most  practical  and  enterprising  citizen,  and  by  his  well-directed 
efforts  has  contributed  largely  to  the  development  of  the  com- 
munity. His  parents,  William  G.  and  Leah  (Morris)  Belshe,  na- 
tives of  Germany  and  Kentucky,  respectively,  crossed  the  plains 
from  Missouri  in  1849,  and  in  Y'olo  county,  Cal.,  they  took  up  a 
ranch  near  Woodland.  After  five  years  Mr.  Belshe  took  his  family 
to  Geyserville,  Sonoma  county,  where  he  resumed  farming,  actively 
conducting  his  duties  until  his  death  in  1859.  To  the  union  of 
Mr.  and  Mrs.  Belshe,  the  latter  of  whom  now  makes  her  home 
in  San  Diego  county,  six  children  were  born,  as  follows:  John  M. 
and  Robert  F.,  deceased ;  Thomas  J. ;  William  P.,  who  resides 
in  Orange  county,  and  two  daughters  who  died  young. 

In  1864  Mr.  Belshe  returned  to  Yrolo  county  with  his  mother, 
who  settled  on  a  farm  near  Madison,  where  she  purchased  two 
hundred  acres  of  land.  Mr.  Belshe  was  educated  in  the  public 
schools  there,  after  which  he  followed  farming  on  his  mother's 
place  until  his  marriage.  For  some  time  thereafter  he  followed 
horticulture,  but  is  now  engaged  in  viticulture  at  Cottonwood. 
Year  by  year  his  vineyard  increases  in  both  value  and  production, 
the  record  for  the  season  of  1911  having  been  seventy-five  tons 
from  nine  acres,  and  for  1912  one  hundred  tons.  The  ranch  is 
counted  one  of  the  leading  properties  of  the  county,  none  present- 
ing a  more  highly  cultivated  or  more  beautiful  appearance  than  the 
Belshe  vineyard. 

Thomas  J.  Belshe  was  united  in  marriage  in  1876  to  Miss 
Johanna  Toelle,  a  native  of  Sacramento.  The  three  children  born 
to  them  are  William  A.,  Mary  I.  and  Cora  B.  In  the  death  of  his 
wife  in  1899  Mr.  Belshe  lost  a  devoted  companion  and  the  children 
a  kind  and  affectionate  mother.  Politically  he  has  always  supported 
Democratic  principles  and  has  at  all  times  maintained  an  active 
concern  in  public  enterprises  of  merit,  being  especially  interested 
in  the  cause  of  education. 


Q€. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  Jit:; 

LAWRENCE  DAVID  STEPHENS 

One  of  the  most  highly  esteemed  and  public-spirited  citizens  of 
Woodland  is  Lawrence  1).  Stephens,  who  since  1898  lias  been 
president  of  the  Bank  of  Woodland,  having  been  a  director  since  its 
organization  in  1868.  when  his  uncle,  John  I).  Stephens,  was  its 
chief  executive.  Born  in  Boonville,  Cooper  county,  Mo..  June  30, 
1835,  he  spent  his  boyhood  on  the  farm  of  his  parents,  James 
Madison  and  Mary  Ann  (Adams)  Stephens,  receiving  his  early  edu- 
cation in  the  district  school  of  his  home  community. 

Mr.  Stephens  is  a  descendant  of  an  old  and  historic  family  who 
came  originally  from  England  and  settled  in  Philadelphia  at  the 
time  of  William  Penn.  His  grandfather,  Joseph  Stephens,  was  born 
in  old  Virginia,  and  was  a  farmer  in  the  Shenandoah  Valley.  He 
served  in  the  Revolutionary  war,  after  which  he  removed  to  the 
state  of  Tennessee,  where  his  son,  James  Madison,  was  probably 
born,  and  he  later  became  a  pioneer  farmer  of  Boonville,  Cooper 
county,  Mo.,  where  he  had  gone  in  1818.  There  James  Madison 
made  his  home  and  died,  having  followed  the  vocation  of  farming 
all  his  life.  Of  the  eleven  children  born  to  James  M.  and  his  wife, 
Mary  Ann  (Adams)  Stephens,  ten  grew  to  maturity:  Eliza,  Mrs. 
S.  A.  Howard,  resides  in  Woodland,  Cal. ;  Jane,  Mrs.  Allison,  passed 
away  near  Boonville,  Mo. ;  Rhoda,  Mrs.  C.  W.  Bonynge.  resides  in 
London,  England;  Zilpha  is  Mrs.  George  W.  Chapman,  of  Winters; 
Kate,  Mrs.  Robert  Hawxlmrst,  lives  in  San  Francisco;  Lawrence 
D.  is  mentioned  below;  Joseph  J.  resides  in  Woodland,  Cal.;  Wil- 
liam H.  H.  is  a  farmer  and  lives  on  the  old  homestead  in  Cooper 
county,  Mo.;  James  M.  is  a  resident  of  San  Diego,  Cal.;  and 
Benjamin  W.  resides  in  Ft.  Worth,  Texas. 

In  April,  1852,  when  a  lad  of  sixteen,  Lawrence  D.  Stephens 
carried  out  a  resolve  which  had  long  been  the  desire  of  his  heart — 
to  travel  to  the  far  west  and  make  for  himself  a  name  which  should 
reflect  credit  not  only  upon  himself,  but  upon  the  family  name 
as  well.  An  opportunity,  without  which,  however,  the  boy  would 
doubtless  have  proceeded  on  his  way  unaided,  occurred  when  his 
uncle,  Andrew  J.  Stephens,  announced  his  intention  of  immigrating 
to  California  and  joining  his  brothers  who  for  some  time  had  been 
successful  ranchers  in  Yolo  county,  in  company  with  five  neighbors 
they  set  out,  traveling  a  portion  of  the  way  with  a  large  train,  but 
throughout  the  major  part  of  the  journey  fraught  with  dangers  as 
well  as  hardships,  they  were  compelled  to  proceed  alone.  After 
several  months'  patient  plodding  and  hoping  they  arrived  safely  at 
their  destination,  the  ranch  of  the  Stephens  Brothers,  at  Madison, 
where  they  remained  for  a  time.  The  following  year  the  boy,  for 
he  was  no  more,  rented  a  farm  and  courageously  began  operations 


■204  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

for  himself.  In  1853  he  and  his  brother,  J.  J.,  purchased  five 
hundred  and  twenty  acres  not  far  from  Madison,  which  they  stocked 
with  cattle  and  sheep  and  successfully  conducted  for  the  next  ten 
years.  During  the  dry  season  of  1864,  however,  they  suffered  with 
the  majority  of  cattle  owners  in  that  section,  and  were  forced  to 
take  their  stock  to  Placer  county,  where  they  camped  in  the  foot- 
hills some  distance  north  of  Newcastle.  In  spite  of  their  efforts 
to  save  their  herd  the  winter  proved  so  cold  that  by  the  following 
spring,  when  they  returned  to  their  home  in  Yolo  county,  they 
had  lost  all  of  their  stock  with  the  exception  of  a  solitary  cow  and 
thirty  sheep. 

About  this  time  occurred  a  circumstance  which  cost  Mr.  Ste- 
phens dearly,  especially  since  he  had  lost  all  his  stock  and  was 
obliged  to  make  a  fresh  start  in  life.  While  on  his  way  from 
Placer  to  Yolo  county,  a  highwayman  stopped  Mm  on  an  unfre- 
quented road  between  Yankee  Jim's  and  Auburn,  demanding  his 
money.  With  regret  bordering  on  despair  Mr.  Stephens  relin- 
quished his  sole  capital  of  $600,  upon  which  he  was  permitted  to 
continue  his  journey  unmolested.  Conditions  at  this  time,  it  will 
be  remembered,  were  utterly  different  from  those  of  the  early 
period  of  emigration,  when  prospectors  journeyed  about  with 
valuable  gold  dust,  etc.,  without  fear  of  robbery. 

Some  time  later,  nothing  daunted  by  his  discouraging  experi- 
ence, Mr.  Stephens  established  himself  in  a  new  locality,  where 
he  continued  to  raise  cattle,  selling  his  beef  profitably  to  the  mining 
camps  of  the  section.  In  1866,  however,  he  went  to  Grass  Valley, 
a  mining  camp,  leaving  his  brother  to  care  for  his  interests. 
Scarcely  had  he  appeared  in  the  midst  of  his  new  associates  when 
they  unanimously  chose  him  as  superintendent  of  the  Omaha  Quartz 
Mining  Company.  Throughout  the  next  year  Mr.  Stephens  filled 
his  post,  returning  in  1867  to  his  ranch  in  Yolo  county.  In  1873 
he  accepted  the  presidency  of  the  Grangers'  warehouse  at  Wood- 
land, which  position  he  held  for  three  years,  when  he  engaged  in 
the  grain  business  with  J.  J.  Stephens  and  J.  H.  Harlan,  a  business 
that  continued  for  about  eight  years.  May  10,  1876,  he  was  united 
in  marriage  to  Miss  Alice  E.  Hunt,  whose  father  was  W.  G.  Hunt, 
a  pioneer.  Immediately  after  the  wedding  the  young  people 
proceeded  on  a  tour  through  the  East,  including  Mr.  Stephens'  old 
home  and  as  far  east  as  the  Philadelphia  Centennial,  Washington 
and  New  York.  Five  years  later,  in  1881,  Mr.  Stephens,  with  his 
brother,  J.  J.  Stephens  and  J.  H.  Harlan  as  associates,  purchased 
a  parcel  of  land  aggregating  three  thousand  acres,  located  ten  miles 
south  of  Fresno.  This  they  stocked  with  cattle  and  also  engaged 
in  raising  grain,  their  success  being  most  gratifying. 

In  1898  occurred  the  death  of  John  D.  Stephens,  and,  as  above 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  205 

mentioned,  Lawrence  D.  Stephens  was  elected  president  of  the 
Bank  of  Woodland,  which  institution  had,  since  its  organization, 
numbered  him  among  its  stockholders.  Incorporated  November  9, 
1868,  the  Bank  of  Woodland  started  on  its  career  with  the  following- 
stockholders  :  John  D.  Stephens,  II.  F.  Hastings,  George  Snodgrass, 
John  Hollingsworth,  F.  S.  Freeman,  C.  Nelson,  D.  Q.  Adams, 
G.  D.  Stephens,  Frank  Miller,  B.  F.  Hastings,  O.  Livermore,  J. 
Wilcoxson,  H.  C.  Hemenway,  U.  Shellhammer,  L.  D.  Stephens, 
Charles  Coil  and  Charles  (i.  Day.  The  original  officers  were: 
J.  D.  Stephens,  president;  F.  S.  Freeman,  vice-president  and  C.  W. 
Bush,  cashier.  Directors  were  chosen  as  follows:  F.  S.  Freeman, 
Frank  Miller,  J.  D.  Stephens,  John  Hollingsworth,  C.  Nelson,  J. 
Wilcoxson,  L.  D.  Stephens,  H.  F.  Hastings  and  C.  W.  Bonynge. 
Capitalized  at  $100,000,  the  venture  proved  so  successful  that  in 
1870,  at  the  annual  stockholders'  meeting,  the  capital  stock  was 
doubled.  A  few  years  afterward,  at  a  special  stockholders'  meeting, 
it  was  raised  to  $500,000  and  some  years  later,  about  1880,  it  was 
increased  to  its  present  capitalization  of  $1,000,000.  On  May 
2,  1882,  L.  D.  Stephens  was  elected  teller  and  acting  president. 
Upon  this  occasion  was  presented  the  following  resolution  by 
J.  H.  Harlan,  second  by  F.  S.  Freeman: 

"Resolved,  That  the  directors  of  the  Bank  of  Woodland  do 
hereby  authorize  and  empower  Lawrence  D.  Stephens,  the  teller 
of  said  bank,  to  do  anything  in  and  about  the  premises  that  the 
president  of  the  bank  has  the  power  to  do,  requiring  the  teller  to 
give  satisfactory  bond  of  $50,000  for  the  faithful  performance  of 
his  duties."  Owing  to  the  death  of  John  Hollingsworth,  0.  <L). 
Nelson  was  elected  a  director  at  the  annual  meeting  February 
20,  1897.  February  25,  1899,  George  D.  Stephens  was  elected 
to  fill  the  vacancy  caused  by  the  death  of  the  vice-president,  F.  S. 
Freeman,  John  S.  Craig  having  been  chosen,  September  7,  1898, 
to  take  the  place  of  director  John  J.  Stephens.  In  February, 
1901,  at  the  regular  annual  meeting,  the  following  directors  were 
chosen  to  fill  vacancies:  C.  Nelson,  C.  Q.  Nelson,  J.  S.  Craig,  J.  11. 
Harlan  (whose  death  occurred  in  April,  1905),  G.  D.  and  L.  D. 
Stephens  and  M.  Michael.  In  February,  1902,  C.  Nelson  was 
elected  vice-president  to  till  the  vacancy  caused  by  the  death  of 
George  D.  Stephens  in  November,  1901,  John  L.  Stephens  taking 
his  place  as  director.  In  191)1  J.  S.  Craig  took  the  place  of  C.  F. 
Thomas,  who  had  held  the  post  of  cashier  since  his  election  in 
1883.  The  paid-up  capital  which  in  about  the  year  1880  had  Keen 
increased  to  $9(;2,10(>  has  remained  unchanged.  In  is?.",  the 
bank  moved  from  its  old  quarters  to  a  newly  remodeled  corner 
building,  which  it  still  occupies.    The  present  directors  are:  L.   I>. 


206  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

Stephens,  J.  L.  Stephens,  C.  Q.  Nelson,  J.  L.  Harlan,  J.  S.  Craig, 
C.  M.  Faris  and  L.  H.  Stephens. 

For  many  years  Mr.  Stephens  held  the  position  of  secretary 
of  the  Capay  Ditch  Company,  which  is  now  known  as  the  Yolo 
County  Power  Company,  capitalized  at  $1,000,000,  of  which  he 
is  president.  He  was  also  actively  interested  in  the  organization 
and  work  of  the  Woodland  Building  and  Loan  Association,  serving 
as  its  treasurer  until  it  was  dissolved.  In  1901  he  assisted  in 
organizing  the  "Woodland  Milling  Company,  whose  buildings  two 
years  later  were  destroyed  by  fire.  Mr.  Stephens  is  still  largely 
interested  in  farming.  His  ranch  near  Madison  comprises  over 
five  hundred  acres  under  the  Yolo  County  Power  Company  ditch, 
which  is  under  cultivation  to  alfalfa,  grapes  and  grain,  and  another 
ranch,  comprising  six  hundred  and  forty  acres,  which  is  under 
the  canal  he  has  also  devoted  to  the  raising  of  grain. 

The  following  children  were  born  to  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Stephens : 
Rowena  Alice,  Mrs.  Fairchild,  of  Woodlaud ;  Lawrence  Hunt, 
director  in  the  Bank  of  Woodland  and  acting  secretary  of  the 
Yolo  County  Power  Company;  William  G.,  in  the  grain  business 
in  Woodland;  and  John  D.,  of  Woodland.  Throughout  his  career 
Mr.  Stephens  has  ever  shown  tact  and  consideration  for  others. 
and  deservedly  enjoys  the  high  regard  of  a  host  of  friends  and 
Imsiness  associates.  His  home  is  ideal,  both  as  to  grounds  and 
dwelling,  which  bear  the  impress  of  the  cultivated  tastes  of  its 
owner. 


WILLIAM  BRAY 

One  of  Yolo  county's  pioneers,  now  deceased,  was  William 
Bray,  who  was  born  in  Monroe  county,  Ky.,  P^ebruary  23,  1832, 
and  passed  away  in  Woodland  March  25,  1894.  When  he  was  in 
his  nineteenth  year,  in  1850,  Mr.  Bray  left  his  home  in  the  south 
for  the  great  west  and  his  journey  across  the  plains  with  ox- 
teams,  in  company  with  a  number  of  other  immigrants,  was  fraught 
great  dangers  from  the  savage  red  men,  who  more  than  once  at- 
tempted to  overpower  the  travelers.  However,  they  made  the  trip 
in  safety,  after  which  they  separated,  Mr.  Bray  mining  a  short 
time  at  Dutch  Flats,  after  which  he  took  up  a  quarter  section  of 
land  in  Yolo  county,  two  miles  south  of  Woodland,  on  which  he 
located  and  built  a  cabin,  and  ever  afterward  he  continued  to  make 
improvements.     He  carried  on  general  farming,  making  a  specialty 


A 
a/ 


Ctzs&tsz^i 


HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  209 

of  raising  grain,  alfalfa  and  stock.  Here  he  made  his  home  until 
his  death.  In  front  of  the  modest  little  home  which  he  built  years 
ago  stands  a  modern  residence,  and  the  great  cottonwood  trees 
which  he  planted  still  surround  the  property  which  he  labored  so 
patiently  to  improve.  His  wife,  formerly  Harriet  Eakle,  was 
born  in  Tennessee,  and  accompanied  her  mother  and  sisters  west- 
ward in  the  early  '50s.  Her  death  occurred  on  the  home  place 
near  Woodland  in  December,  1907.  The  following  children  were 
born  to  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Bray:  Alexander,  deceased;  John  E.,  de- 
ceased; Sarah  A.  and  Lucy  Jane,  who  share  the  eighty  acres  left 
by  their  parents;  James  R.,  whose  wife  before  her  marriage  was 
Ida  Butterfield,  and  who  has  one  son;  William  H.,  deceased;  and 
Mary  C,  who  is  now  Mrs.  William  Gould,  of  Woodland. 

Mr.  and  Mrs.  Bray  were  both  devout  members  of  the  Chris- 
tian Church  in  Woodland  and  were  mourned  by  a  large  number 
of  friends  who  knew  them  well. 


JOHN  WOHLFROM 

The  Yolo  County  Savings  Bank  under  the  presidency  of  John 
Wohlfrom  has  maintained  the  high  position  in  financial  circles  it  lias 
won  through  the  cautious,  conservative  policy  adopted  by  its  of- 
ficers at  the  very  beginning  of  its  history.  To  a  large  decree  the 
success  of  the  institution  may  be  attributed  to  the  present  head  of 
the  concern,  who  as  one  of  the  promoters  and  organizers  of  the 
bank,  became  a  member  of  the  original  board  of  directors  and 
served  in  the  capacity  of  vice-president  until  promoted  to  his  pres- 
ent post  of  honor  and  trust.  It  is  said  by  many  that  no  citizen  of 
the  city  of  Woodland  exerts  a  greater  influence  upon  its  financial 
affairs  than  does  Mr.  Wohlfrom  and  certain  it  is  that  none  displays 
more  prudence  in  investments  or  greater  tact  in  business  dealings 
than  he.  Indeed,  his  gratifying  success  comes  from  the  constant 
exercise  of  industry,  prudence  and  tact,  for  he  had  none  to  aid  him 
in  getting  a  foothold  in  the  world  and  when  he  came  to  America 
he  was  hampered  not  only  by  poverty,  but  also  by  a  lack  of  knowl- 
edge of  the  English  language. 

Born  in  the  viciuity  of  Strassburg  and  the  Rhine  river  in  Kir- 
cheim,  Alsace  (then  a  part  of),  France,  November  9.  1832,  John 
Wohlfrom  was  the  youngest  son  among  nine  children,  six  of  whom 
lived  to  maturity  and  three  came  to  the  new  world.  Educated  in 
the  schools  of  Alsace,  he  left  home  al  the  age  of  twentv  vears  and 


210  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

took  passage  from  Havre,  France,  for  America  in  1852,  landing  in 
New  Orleans  on  New  Year's  day  of  1853  and  proceeding  direct  to 
St.  Louis,  Mo.,  where  were  two  older  brothers,  Joseph  and  Anton, 
both  of  whom  died  in  Colusa  county,  Cal.  Hoping  to  secure  em- 
ployment in  Illinois,  he  crossed  the  river  from  St.  Louis  on  the  ice 
and  after  tramping  a  considerable  distance  he  was  hired  by  a 
farmer  near  Centerville  at  $6  per  month.  Later  his  brother,  An- 
ton, found  a  place  for  him  at  $10  per  month  with  George  Lewis,  an 
Englishman  living  at  Boonville,  Mo.,  and  it  was  there  that  Mr. 
Wohlfrom  learned  to  speak  English.  Upon  the  removal  of  his  em- 
ployer to  St.  Louis  he  accompanied  him  to  the  city  and  secured 
work  as  a  drayman.  In  a  short  time  he  had  a  team  of  his  own  and 
in  business  for  himself. 


It  was  during  1855  that  Mr.  Wohlfrom  started  for  the  west. 
Misfortune  attended  him  from  the  first.  The  steamer  on  which  he 
had  taken  passage  burned  and  he  escaped  with  difficulty.  Then  he 
boarded  a  second  steamer,  which  soon  sank,  the  passengers,  how- 
ever, being  saved.  Finally  the  third  steamer  conveyed  him  as  far 
as  Aspinwall.  From  Panama  he  sailed  north  on  a  vessel  that  cast 
anchor  at  San  Francisco  March  2,  1855.  June  of  the  same  year 
found  him  in  Yolo  county,  where  he  worked  three  months  in  the 
hay  fields.  Six  weeks  in  Sierra  county  as  a  miner  caused  all  of  his 
earnings  to  vanish.  From  Downieville  he  returned  to  Yolo  county, 
where  he  secured  work  as  a  farm  hand  at  $1  per  day.  Later  he  and 
a  cousin,  Joseph  Wohlfrom,  who  had  accompanied  him  to  Califor- 
nia, purchased  one  hundred  and  sixty  acres  of  land  two  miles  east 
of  what  is  now  Blacks  Station.  The  entire  tract  cost  them  $280. 
In  1856  their  partnership  was  dissolved. 

The  old  Weyant  place  of  three  hundred  and  twenty  acres,  which 
lie  still  owns,  was  purchased  in  1860  by  John  Wohlfrom.  There 
he  raised,  bought  and  sold  horses,  cattle  and  sheep.  At  his  house 
he  accommodated  travelers  with  board  and  rooms  and  he  also  car- 
ried a  stock  of  merchandise  and  groceries,  besides  having  the  post- 
office  known  as  Prairie  at  his  store.  In  1868  he  built  a  store  on 
Colusa  plains  two  miles  north  of  College  City  and  remained  there 
until  the  building  was  burned  in  1873.  Besides  the  Weyant  prop- 
erty he  acquired  three  farms  within  twelve  miles  of  Woodland,  two 
of  these  being  quarter-section  farms,  while  the  other  contains  two 
hundred  acres.  In  addition  he  owns  ten  hundred  and  forty  acres  in 
one  body  in  Colusa  county  and  a  well-improved  farm  of  seven  hun- 
dred and  twenty  acres  two  miles  south  of  College  City.  With  his 
brother  he  owned  at  Prize,  Colusa  county,  a  finely  improved  farm  of 
two  hundred  and  eighty  acres  and  besides  he  owned  four  hundred 
acres  one  and  a  half  miles  west  of  Maxwell,  Colusa  county,  which 
he  has  since  sold.     During  the  years  of  his  greatest  physical  activ- 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  211 

ity  he  was  called  the  cattle  king  of  Yolo  and  Colusa  counties. 
Finally  the  demands  upon  his  energy  proved  too  much  for  his 
strength  and  he  decided  to  enter  upon  activities  less  taxing  physi- 
cally. Coming  to  Woodland  in  1891  he  erected  a  valuable  residence 
at  No.  203  Court  street  and  has  since  been  interested  in  the  banking 
business. 

After  he  became  a  resident  of  the  United  States  and  had  made 
a  study  of  the  political  issues  of  the  country,  Mr.  Wohlfrom  em- 
braced Republican  principles  and  cast  his  first  presidential  ballot 
for  Abraham  Lincoln.  His  first  wife,  whom  he  married  in  1861, 
was  Barbara  Keller,  a  native  of  Switzerland,  but  a  resident  of 
Yolo  county  for  a  long  time  prior  to  her  demise.  In  1891  he  was 
united  with  Miss  Helene  Wimmer,  who  was  born  in  Baden,  Ger- 
many, April  4,  186.1,  the  daughter  of  Michael  and  Elizabeth  (Gras) 
Wimmer,  likewise  natives  of  Germany.  She  came  to  Yolo  county  in 
young  womanhood  and  resided  with  her  sister,  Mrs.  John  Bern- 
merly,  until  her  marriage.  She  passed  away  November  24,  1908, 
mourned  by  all  who  were  privileged  to  know  her.  It  is  not  fulsome 
praise  to  say  that  John  Wohlfrom's  life  has  been  one  that  might  be 
taken  as  an  example  for  young  men  just  starting  in  life  to  follow. 
He  began  his  career  without  means  or  backing  of  any  kind,  but  he 
had  implanted  within  him  what  was  better  than  anything  else, — an 
ambition  and  determination  to  succeed.  At  no  time  in  his  search 
for  fortune  did  he  lose  sight  of  the  Golden  Rule,  squaring  all  of  his 
actions  by  this  unfailing  guide,  and  it  is  for  this  reason  that  as  lie 
nears  life's  close  and  looks  back  over  the  past  he  can  do  so  with 
satisfaction,  knowing  that  he  has  wilfully  wronged  no  one.  He  has 
had  no  greater  pleasure  in  life  than  giving  a  helping  hand  to  young 
men  who,  like  himself,  have  had  their  own  way  to  make  against 
great  odds.  His  integrity  and  honor  are  unquestioned  and  of  him  it 
may  truly  he  said  that  his  word  is  as  good  as  his  bond. 


ROBERT  W.  BROWNING 

To  the  pioneers  of  western  civilization  who  suffered  all 
manner  of  hardships  and  baffling  failures,  yet  who  were  sus- 
tained throughout  this  trying  period  by  their  splendid  faith 
in  their  ultimate  victory  over  the  problem  presented  by  this 
new  and  untried  land,  too  much  credit  can  not  be  given.  The 
pleasant  and  convenient  conditions  of  life  in  our  modern  day  so 
strongly    contrast    with    existence    in    the    last    century    that     the 


212  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

bravest  of  us  would  not  feel  sufficient  courage  to  attempt,  for 
any  compensation,  to  live  and  work  and  suffer  under  the  cir- 
cumstances that  surrounded  our  forefathers. 

One  of  the  most  manly  and  indomitable  characters  who 
played  his  part  as  a  pioneer  we  find  in  Robert  W.  Browning, 
a  southerner,  with  the  high  ambitions  and  earnest,  impulsive 
nature  of  a  true  son  of  the  south.  Born  near  Tompkinsville, 
Monroe  county,  Ky.,  December  1,  1833,  he  came  to  the  coast 
at  the  age  of  twenty  with  his  parents.  The  journey  was  made  in 
1854  across  the  plains,  and  in  the  same  year  the  family  set- 
tled on  the  farm  which  Mr.  Browning  now  occupies,  four  miles 
southwest  of  Woodland.  The  father,  Charles  Browning,  passed 
away  here  in  1861,  when  sixty-two  years  of  age.  The  mother 
lived  to  reach  the  age  of  seventy-nine,  passing  away  in  1882. 
South  Carolina  was  the  birth  state  of  the  elder  Browning,  and 
his  wife,  Elizabeth,  was  born  in  Kentucky,  the  native  state  of 
her  parents,  James  and  Ann  (Hibbit)  Crawford.  Botli  Mr.  and 
Mrs.  Browning  were  earnest  Christians  and  were  members  of 
the  church  of  that  denomination.  Mr.  Browning  was  a  loyal 
Whig  until  that  party  passed  out  of  existence,  when  he  allied 
his  political  sympathies  to  the  Democratic  party.  Eight  chil- 
dren were  born  to  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Browning:  Mrs.  Ann  Brandon 
and  James  C,  deceased;  Mrs.  Martha  Welch,  who  resides  near 
Woodland ;  Mrs.  Jane  Lawson,  of  Woodland ;  Mrs.  Elizabeth 
Barnes,  of  Eureka;  Mrs.  Mary  Dameron,  deceased;  William  Y., 
deceased;  and  Robert  W. 

Answering  one  of  the  greatest  needs  of  the  country,  R.  W. 
Browniug  established  himself  in  the  freighting  trade  in  1861 
and  during  the  next  four  summers  carried  on  the  business  of 
transporting  goods  between  Sacramento  and  the  mines  in  Nevada. 
Meanwhile  he  devoted  much  of  his  time  to  his  farm  of  one 
hundred  and  sixty  acres  that  he  had  pre-empted,  and  later  he 
bought  adjoining  land  until  he  now  has  a  ranch  of  five  hundred 
acres,  devoted  largely  to  the  raising  of  grain,  besides  which  he 
carries  on  a  dairy. 

In  1889  the  cottage  which  had  sheltered  the  family  during 
their  first  years  in  the  west  was  removed  and  replaced  by  a 
comfortable,  substantial  dwelling.  Mrs.  Browning,  formerly  Miss 
Martha  Kincheloe,  was  born  in  Missouri,  the  daughter  of  Z.  B. 
Kincheloe,  who  resides  five  miles  southwest  of  Woodland.  Ten 
children  were  born  to  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Browning.  The  eldest  child, 
Lela,  married  Lanson  Merritt,  by  whom  she  had  two  daughters, 
Gladys  A.  and  Florence  C;  after  the  death  of  Mr.  Merritt  she 
became  the  wife  of  John  Reith,  Jr.  The  other  children  are  Wil- 
liam  M.    Browning,    who    served    as   auditor    of   Yolo    county    and 


fajtesKst^O.    ,    CO  . 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  215 

is  now  accountant  in  the  Bank  of  Yolo;  Elizabeth,  the  wife  of 
A.  C.  Huston,  an  attorney  of  Woodland;  Zora,  the  wife  of  Henry 
J.  Bush,  who  is  in  the  mercantile  business  in  Woodland;  Charles 
B.,  deceased;  Harry  H.,  who  married  Miss  Gladys  Knight,  of 
Woodland;  Irma,  Mrs.  W.  G.  Stephens,  of  Woodland;  Philip 
Ludwell,  deceased;  Victorine  and  Donald  M.,  who  are  still  at 
home.  The  mother  of  these  children  died  March  17,  1910,  at 
the  age  of  sixty  years.  She  had  been  an  active  member  of  the 
Christian  Church  of  Woodland. 

The  Bank  of  Yolo,  a  solid  and  reliable  institution,  controlled 
by  some  of  Woodland's  most  responsible  citizens,  has  enjoyed 
Mr.  Browning's  services  as  vice-president  for  many  years.  Mr. 
Browning  is  an  avowed  Democrat.  For  the  past  twenty  years 
he  has  served  as  school  trustee  and  is  a  member  of  Woodland 
Lodge  Xo.  156,  F.  &  A.  M.  His  firm,  dependable  character  and  his 
faithfulness  to  duty  have  earned  for  him  a  high  regard  in  the 
community  which  lie  has  helped  to  build. 


MRS.    EMMA    C.    LAUGENOUB 

As  compared  with  the  volumes  that  have  been  written  exploit- 
ing the  accomplislnnents  of  men  in  bringing  California  up  to  its 
present  state  of  development,  little  or  nothing  has  been  said  con- 
cerning the  part  women  have  taken  in  this  same  work.  While 
from  an  outward  viewpoint  the  characters  they  have  represented 
in  the  drama  have  been  less  conspicuous  perhaps  than  those 
portrayed  by  the  men,  nevertheless  they  have  been  equally  neces- 
sary to  bring  about  the  ends  accomplished,  as  many  men  have 
declared  in  giving  the  synopsis  of  their  lives.  Few  of  California's 
early  settlers  recognized  more  thoroughly  than  did  John  D.  Lauge- 
nour  the  sustaining  help  and  comfort  which  he  received  from  his 
wife,  and  he  frankly  gave  credit  to  her  for  much  that  lie  was 
able  to  accomplish  during  his  long  residence  in  the  west.  Emma 
Christene  Watkins  was  born  in  New  Philadelphia,  Ohio,  May  12, 
1842,  and  was  therefore  about  eighteen  years  of  age  when  she 
became  the  wife  of  John  D.  Laugenour  in  1860.  Of  the  eight 
children  born  to  them  five  are  now  living  and  exemplifying  in 
their  daily  lives  the  high  principles  of  manhood  and  womanhood 
instilled  in  them  by  the  teachings  of  their  parents.  Named  in  the 
order  of  their  birth  they  are  as   follows:     Philip   T..    Henry    W.. 


216  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

Jesse  D.,  William  R.,  and  Emma  Carter,  the  wife  of  Walter  F. 
Malcomb. 

To  the  tactful  sympathy,  as  well  as  conservative  judgment  of 
his  wife,  Mr.  Laugenour  attributed  much  of  his  success,  and  the 
fact  that  since  his  death  she  has  faithfully  endeavored  to  carry 
out  plans  of  both  philanthropy  and  business  in  which  she  deems 
he  would  have  been  deeply  interested,  is  proof  of  the  confidence 
and  understanding  which  existed  between  them. 

As  president  of  the  W.  C.  T.  U.  of  Woodland,  and  as  the 
principal  financial  backer  of  the  Home  Alliance,  a  paper  devoted 
not  only  to  the  temperance  movement,  but  to  general  news  as 
well,  Mrs.  Laugenour  has  done  much  to  aid  in  the  banishment  of 
the  liquor  evil,  and  by  her  womanly  sympathy  and  sunny  person- 
ality, united  with  pecuniary  assistance,  has  lightened  many  a  sad 
heart  and  given  more  than  one  poor  but  ambitious  young  person 
a  chance  to  prove  himself.  She  has  lived  to  see  the  cause  of  tem- 
perance victorious  in  Yolo  county,  but  now  the  saloons  are  ban- 
ished from  every  part  of  the  county,  with  the  exception  of 
Broderick  and  Clarksburg.  She  is  also  happy  to  have  lived  to 
see  the  object  for  which  she  labored  for  twenty  years — the  enfran- 
chisement of  women— crowned  with  success,  she  having  been  the 
pioneer  and  the  foremost  worker  in  her  county  in  pushing  the 
cause  of  suffrage  to  a  reality.  In  1900  she  bore  a  part  of  the 
expense  incident  to  the  erection  of  Mary's  Chapel,  near  Yolo,  in 
order  that  those  who  could  not  go  to  the  city  churches  might 
have  a  place  to  worship,  as  well  as  to  provide  accommodations  for 
funeral  corteges  from  the  outlying  districts  of  Yolo  county.  She 
also  organized  the  Mary's  Cemetery  Association,  which  she  has 
served  as  president  about  fifteen  years,  and  it  was  during  this 
time  that  Mary's  Chapel  was  built.  In  her  home,  Christene  Cot- 
tage, Woodland,  always  open  to  those  who  seek  comfort  and  assis- 
tance, Mrs.  Laugenour  dispenses  true  hospitality.  To  her,  life 
holds  nothing  sweeter  than  doing  for  those  less  fortunate  than 
herself,  and  it  is  meet  that  her  name  should  be,  as  it  is,  a  synonym 
for  purity  and  beauty  of  character. 


ERASTUS   SYLVESTER  FARNHAM 

The  history  of  E.  S.  Farnham,  a  Civil  war  veteran,  is  most 
interesting  and  well  worthy  of  the  man  it  represents.  His  paternal 
grandfather,  Benjamin  Farnham,  fought  in  the  Revolutionary  war 
and  died  in  Van  Buren  countv,  Mich.     Daniel  Farnham,  the  son 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  217 

of  this  Revolutionary  hero  and  the  father  of  our  subject,  was  born 
in  New  York  state  in  1799  and  when  quite  young  removed  to  Mich- 
igan and  took  up  farming.  In  1850,  accompanied  by  his  son  Hor- 
ace and  Theodore  Dopking,  now  a  resident  of  Woodland,  he  came 
west,  crossing  the  plains  with  oxen.  He  mined  three  years,  then 
returning  to  his  Michigan  farm  by  way  of  the  Panama  route. 
Leasing  his  farm  in  1858  he  again  made  his  way  to  California 
with  his  son  Daniel,  Jr.  During  the  journey  he  acted  as  captain 
of  the  train.  Upon  his  arrival  in  the  west  Mr.  Farnham  took 
up  mining,  following  it  until  1865,  when  he  engaged  in  farming  in 
Yolo  county.  He  died  at  the  age  of  eighty-two  years.  He  was  a 
valued  member  of  the  Methodist  Episcopal  Church  and  politically 
was  a  Republican.  Naomi  (Rice)  Farnham,  his  wife,  a  native  of 
Ohio,  died  in  Yrolo  county  at  the  age  of  eighty-two  years.  Their 
children  were:  Amanda,  Mrs.  Lee,  now  living  in  Michigan;  Mary, 
Mrs.  W.  Wilkinson,  who  died  in  Michigan;  Erastus  S. ;  Caroline, 
and  Daniel,  Jr.  By  a  previous  marriage,  with  Miss  Myers,  Mr. 
Farnham  had  two  children,  Horace  and  Catherine. 

Erastus  Sylvester  Farnham  was  born  November  1,  1844,  in 
Cass  county,  Mich.,  where  he  spent  his  youth,  receiving  his  edu- 
cation in  the  public  schools.  At  the  age  of  sixteen,  in  the  fall  of 
1861,  he  offered  his  services  as  volunteer  in  the  Civil  war  and 
entered  Company  K,  Twelfth  Michigan  Volunteer  Infantry.  After 
being  mustered  in  at  Niles  he  went  south  with  his  company,  there 
after  engaging  in  many  battles,  including  Shiloh,  or  Pittsburg 
Landing,  and  Little  Rock.  At  the  close  of  the  war,  having  been 
honorably  discharged,  he  returned  to  his  home  in  Michigan,  where 
he  farmed  about  a  year,  after  which,  having  disposed  of  bis  land, 
he  came  to  California,  his  mother  and  his  sister  Caroline  (now 
Mrs.  Thomas  Beckett)  accompanying  him.  They  came  by  way 
of  Nicaragua,  arriving  in  California  in  the  spring  of  1866.  Mr. 
Farnham  purchased  eighty  acres  two  and  one-half  miles  southeast 
of  Woodland,  a  portion  of  this  farm  having  belonged  to  his  father 
and  his  brother  Daniel.  Mr.  Farnham  erected  a  house  and  other 
buildings  upon  it  and  pursued  farming  activities.  In  addition 
to  his  home  place  he  owns  six  hundred  and  forty  acres  west  of 
Orland,  Glenn  county,  which  is  devoted  to  stock  raising  and  the 
cultivation  of  grain.  lie  also  has  one  hundred  and  seventy  acres 
on  Cache  creek,  seven  miles  northwest  of  Woodland,  seventy  acres 
of  which  is  planted  in  alfalfa.  Most  of  this  tract  is  under  irriga- 
tion. His  dairy  business,  which  lie  established  in  1871,  has  been 
making  fine  strides  and  is  now  an  excellent  asset.  Mr.  Farnham 
was  one  of  the  organizers  of  the  Woodland  Creamery,  having 
erected  a  large  plant  in  Woodland,  and  he  is  a  member  of  the 
board  of  directors.     In  addition  to  the  property  mentioned  he  also 


218  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

owns  one  hundred  and  sixty  acres  of  grain  land  in  Hungry  IIol 
low,  Yolo  county.  He  was  among  the  first  in  this  section  to  ven- 
ture in  the  raising  of  alfalfa. 

In  1870  Mr.  Farnham  married  Miss  Ella  Myers,  born  iu  Mil- 
ford,  Ind.,  July  5,  1854.  Her  father,  Martin  Myers,  a  native  of 
Ohio,  came  to  California  from  Indiana  in  1850,  his  wagons  being- 
drawn  by  oxen.  Taking  up  his  residence  in  Sacramento,  lie 
opened  the  "Watcheer  House,"  but  two  years  later,  having  a 
longing  for  the  old  home,  he  returned  to  the  Hoosier  state  and 
was  married,  coming  west  again  in  1860.  The  trip,  which  was 
made  with  horses,  consumed  five  months.  He  teamed  in  Nevada 
a  short  time  before  finally  locating  in  this  state,  and  passed  away 
in  Woodland  at  the  age  of  sixty-seven.  His  wife  was  formerly 
Eliza  Keightley,  a  native  of  Indiana  and  the  daughter  of  a  mill- 
wright. At  the  age  of  eighty  years  she  makes  her  home  with  her 
daughter,  Mrs.  Farnham.  The  three  children  born  to  Mr.  and 
Mrs.  Myers  are:  Charles,  engaged  in  the  contracting  business  in 
Long  Beach;  "Warren,  manager  of  one  of  Woodland's  creameries; 
and   Ella,   Mrs.   Farnham. 

Mr.  and  Mrs.  Farnham  have  had  nine  children:  Stella,  for- 
merly a  teacher,  and  now  Mrs.  T.  J.  Dinsdale,  of  Woodland ; 
Mary  E.,  who  died  when  seventeen  years  old;  Minnie  B.,  a  teacher, 
who  died  at  the  age  of  twenty-eight;  Edwin  D.,  a  farmer  in  Ore- 
gon; Alta  Mae,  a  graduate  of  the  San  Jose  state  normal  and  a 
teacher  until  her  marriage  to  H.  N.  Cunning,  of  Oakland;  Elsie, 
who  died  when  eight  years  old;  Elmer  and  Warren,  who  are 
farming  on  Cache  creek;   and  Lloyd,  who  is  on  the  home  place. 

Mr.  and  Mrs.  Farnham  are  members  of  the  Methodist  Epis- 
copal Church.  They  assisted  in  erecting  two  churches  in  their 
city  and  are  active  in  all  public  affairs.  Mr.  Farnham  is  and  has 
been  clerk  of  the  Spring  Lake  school  district  for  the  past  thirty 
years  and  in  politics  is  a  Republican.  He  is  connected  with 
Woodland  Lodge  No.  156,  F.  &  A.  M.,  and  is  a  member  and  past 
commander  of  William  H.  Seward  Post  No.  65,  G.  A.  R.,  of  Wood- 
land. He  was  also  at  one  time  a  member  of  the  county  central 
committee.  He  is  president  of  the  Woodland  Cemetery  Associa- 
tion. The  Farmers'  Mutual  Fire  Insurance  Company,  of  which 
he  was  one  of  the  organizers  and  the  first  president,  has  over 
$1,000,000  worth  of  property  insured  and  has  never  yet  had  a  fire. 

Mrs.  Farnham  is  a  member  of  the  W.  C.  T.  U.  and  of  the 
William  H.  Seward  Relief  Corps,  of  which  latter  organization  she 
was  president  for  two  years.  She  is  much  interested  in  plant  life 
and  has  many  fine  specimens  of  cacti.  The  excellent  qualities 
of  both  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Farnham  have  won  for  them  a  high  place 
in  the  esteem  of  friends  and  acquaintances. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  221 

JOHN  D.  LAUGENOUR 

A  residence  of  nearly  forty  years  in  Yolo  county  made  it  pos- 
sible for  John  D.  Laugenour  to  witness  its  development,  as  well 
as  to  be  a  contributor  to  its  progress.  Over  twenty  years  have 
passed  since  Death  ceased  his  activities,  but  such  was  the  impress 
that  his  life  made  upon  those  who  were  privileged  to  know  him 
and  labor  with  him  that  he  is  still  remembered  and  revered  by 
old  pioneers  as  one  of  the  strong  factors  in  the  growth  and 
development  of  the  country,  and  of  Yolo  county  and  Woodland  in 
particular.  A  native  of  North  Carolina,  he  was  born  near  the 
city  of  Salem,  December  23,  1823,  and  was  reared  and  educated 
there.  His  parents  were  farmers,  and  it  was  quite  natural  there- 
fore that  he  should  assist  with  the  farm  duties  when  school  was 
not  in  session.  In  1847  he  went  to  Indiana  and  there  learned 
the  wagon  maker's  trade.  Two  years  later  the  rumors  of  the 
finding  of  gold  in  California  put  a  different  aspect  upon  the  whole 
situation,  and  as  soon  as  possible  he  made  arrangements  to  come 
to  the  west  in  search  of  his  fortune.  Hopes  were  high  in  the 
hearts  of  the  little  party  of  five  that  started  from  Indiana  in  the 
latter  part  of  the  year  1849,  consisting  of  Thomas  F.,  Lewis, 
George  and  John  D.  Laugenour  and  Joseph  Spurgeon,  a  friend. 
Their  five  yoke  of  faithful  oxen  brought  them  into  Hangtown  in 
September  in  the  following  year,  the  termination  of  a  long  and 
tedious  journey  by  way  of  Fort  Hall.  Months  of  intense  priva- 
tion had  been  endured,  including  not  only  sickness  and  danger, 
but  hunger  as  well,  and  only  those  who  have  experienced  a  sim- 
ilar situation  can  know  the  joy  that  was  theirs  when  they  were 
able  to  make  a  permanent  camp  and  share  in  the  crude  comforts 
that  for  the  time  being  are  exalted  to  the  point  of  luxuries.  The 
first  winter  was  passed  in  the  mines  of  Kelseyville,  and  the  fol- 
lowing spring  Mr.  Laugenour  started  out  for  Hangtown,  having  only 
twenty-five  cents  in  his  pocket.  Here,  as  in  Kelseyville,  lie  was  not 
satisfied  with  his  efforts,  but  he  made  no  mistake  in  removing  to 
the  south  fork  of  the  American  river,  where  he  realized  between 
$500  and  $600  a  day. 

With  the  money  which  he  made  in  this  venture  Mr.  Lauge- 
nour went  to  Yankee  Jim's,  Placer  county,  where,  in  partnership 
with  his  two  brothers,  he  established  a  trading  post,  in  connection 
with  which  he  also  carried  on  a  teaming  business.  Desiring  to 
settle  down  to  the  life  which  was  after  all  more  congenial  to  him, 
Mr.  Laugenour  disposed  of  his  interest  in  that  part  of  the  state 
and  came  to  Yolo  county,  and  on  January  12,  1852,  he  made  his 
first  purchase  of  land,  stocking  it  with  cattle.  The  venture  proved 
profitable    from    the    beginning,    inasmuch    as    stock    was    bringing 


222  HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

high  prices  in  the  market,  and  as  that  was  in  a  day  when  fencing- 
was  not  required  to  mark  individual  properties  the  large  herds 
of  cattle  could  graze  unmolested  over  large  tracts  of  land.  He 
increased  his  herds  to  take  advantage  of  the  opportunities  offered, 
but  when  the  business  began  to  be  overdone  and  changed  condi- 
tions reduced  the  price  of  stock,  he  wisely  disposed  of  his  cattle. 
Adjusting  himself  to  the  changes  which  came  with  the  passing- 
years,  Mr.  Laugenour  wisely  took  up  grain  farming,  being  asso- 
ciated in  this  undertaking  with  L.  M.  Curtis.  Among  the  ranches 
which  they  operated  was  the  famous  Glenn  ranch,  in  what  is  now 
Glenn  county.  In  1860  Mr.  Laugenour  purchased  a  large  tract 
of  land  on  Cache  creek,  which  was  also  devoted  to  grain  raising. 
Going  to  Knight's  Landing  in  1867  he  there  opened  a  mercantile 
business  with  C.  F.  Thomas,  the  firm  making  a  specialty  of 
buying  and  selling  grain.  Later,  owing  to  the  increased  produc- 
tion of  wheat  and  barley  in  that  section,  Mr.  Laugenour  erected 
a  grain  warehouse  which  he  and  his  partner,  Mr.  Thomas,  con- 
ducted successfully  for  seven  years.  The  extension  of  the  railroad 
to  Woodland  was  destined  to  make  a  change  in  Mr.  Laugenour 's 
plans,  and  in  the  same  year,  1874,  he  removed  to  this  city  to 
make  his  home.  He  was  guided  in  his  decision  by  the  belief 
that  the  town  would  one  day  be  a  shipping  center  of  importance 
and  he  lived  to  see  that  his  foresight  had  been  correct.  Gradu- 
ally disposing  of  his  scattered  interests  he  devoted  his  attention 
to  the  development  of  Woodland  and  vicinity,  aiding  in  many 
public  enterprises,  not  only  with  capital,  which  was  vastly  impor- 
tant, but  also  with  energy  and  executive  ability  as  well. 

Mr.  Laugenour 's  marriage  in  1860  united  him  with  Emma 
Christene  Watkins,  who  was  born  in  New  Philadelphia,  Ohio,  in 
1842,  the  daughter  of  Enos  Watkins.  Of  the  eight  children  born 
to  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Laugenour  five  are  living,  as  follows :  Philip 
T.,  Henry  W.,  Jesse  D.,  William  E.  and  Emma  Carter,  the  latter 
the  wife  of  Walter  F.  Malcolm.  With  the  exception  of  Jesse  D., 
a  resident  of  Salem,  N.  O,  all  of  the  children  are  living  in  Yolo 
county.  Up  to  the  time  of  his  death,  April  18,  1891,  Mr.  Lauge- 
nour actively  conducted  his  affairs,  enjoying  among  his  friends 
and  associates  a  reputation  that  was  as  honorable  as  his  character. 


MRS.  MARY  DEXTER-HENSHALL 


Yolo  county  is  fortunate  indeed  in  possessing  many  representa- 
tives of  old  American  families.     The  early  pioneers  who   settled 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  223 

here  were  principally  descendants  of  those  who  left  their  European 
homes  in  the  previous  century  and  became  the  founders  of  this 
republic. 

The  records  of  the  Dexter  family  show  that  early  in  the 
seventeenth  century  several  members  emigrated  from  Scotland  to 
Canada,  where  they  settled  in  Home  district,  York  county.  In 
May,  1835,  John  and  Margaret  Dexter,  grandparents  of  Mrs.  John 
Henshall,  county  superintendent  of  schools,  crossed  the  line  and 
located  in  Amboy,  Lee  county,  111.  They  were  the  first  white 
settlers  in  a  fertile  section  populated  by  roving  bands  of  Indians, 
who  disputed  fiercely  the  advent  of  the  palefaces.  At  that  time 
Thomas  J.  Dexter,  father  of  Mrs.  Henshall,  was  five  years  of 
age.  Young  Dexter  must  have  inherited  the  adventurous  blood 
of  his  parents,  for  when  but  nineteen  years  of  age  he  joined  an 
overland  expedition  to  California.  The  usual  encounters  with 
Indians  furnished  plenty  of  excitement  en  route.  On  arrival  in 
the  Land  of  Gold  in  1849  young  Dexter  followed  mining  for 
a  time  with  varying  success  and  later  homesteaded  a  quarter 
section  two  and  a  half  miles  southeast  of  where  Woodland  is  lo- 
cated. In  1854  he  returned  overland  to  his  old  home  in  Lee 
county,  111.,  where  he  married  Miss  Eliza  Hills,  sister  of  Sheriff 
Hills  of  Dixon.  The  lure  of  the  west  was  too  strong,  however, 
and  the  young  couple  again  made  the  trip  overland,  returning  to 
the  Yolo  county  homestead.  It  was  there  that  the  present  county 
superintendent  of  schools  was  born.  Mrs.  Henshall  is  the  youngest 
of  a  family  of  four  daughters.  The  others  are  Mrs.  Nina  Lee 
Fraser  of  Honolulu,  T.  H.,  and  Mrs.  Delia  Nye  Gibbs,  and  Mrs. 
Grace  Margaret  Johnston,  both  of  Woodland. 

Mrs.  Henshall  is  probably  known  to  every  man,  woman  and 
child  in  Yolo  county.  She  entered  upon  her  vocation  of  teacher 
at  an  early  age  and  taught  for  several  years  in  country  schools 
near  Woodland.  Later  she  held  a  position  as  teacher  in  the  Wood- 
land grammar  schools  for  nine  years.  On  January  15,  1906,  she 
was  appointed  by  the  board  of  supervisors  to  fill  the  position  made 
vacant  by  the  death  of  Mrs.  Minnie  DeVilbiss,  county  superin- 
tendent of  schools.  On  November  (>,  1906,  she  was  elected  to  the 
same  office  by  a  good  majority  of  the  votes  cast. 

On  November  8,  1910,  Mrs.  Henshall  did  not  have  an  oppo- 
nent. She  was  the  nominee  of  the  Republican,  Democratic,  Prohi- 
bition and  Socialist  parties  and  received  the  full  voting  strength 
of  the  county.  Such  an  endorsement,  after  four  years  in  official 
position,  speaks  louder  than  pages  of  printed  eulogy  for  pains 
taking  and  efficient  conduct  of  school  affairs.  During  her  term  of 
office  many  forward  steps  have  been  taken,  and  Yolo  county 
schools  have  attained  a  standing  second  to  none  in  the  state.     The 


224  HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

elementary  schools,  when  the  present  superintendent  assumed 
office,  had  a  course  that  required  nine  years  to  complete.  The 
length  of  the  school  term  was  eight  months  and  the  school  tax 
was  the  third  lowest  in  California.  The  supervisors  increased 
the  tax  rate  for  school  purposes  from  sixteen  cents  to  nineteen 
cents  in  response  to  her  persistent  representations  of  the  urgent 
necessity  for  so  doing.  This  increase  enabled  the  boards  of 
school  trustees  to  lengthen  the  term  to  nine  months  and  the  board 
of  education  to  shorten  the  course  of  study  in  the  elementary 
schools  to  eight  years.  Teachers'  salaries  in  all  but  four  smail 
districts  have  been  raised  from  $5  to  $35  per  month,  thus  enabling 
Yolo  county  to  secure  the  best  talent  available. 

Many  school  libraries  have  been  merged  with  the  county  li- 
brary under  the  provisions  of  Sec.  1715  of  the  School  Law,  giving 
boards  of  trustees  or  city  boards  of  education  the  power  to  make 
the  school  library  a  branch  of  the  county  library.  This  work  has 
been  so  successful  that  Yolo  county  is  admitted  to  lead  the  state 
in  this  latest  development  of  educational  progress.  Inquiries 
have  been  received  from  superintendents  all  over  the  state  asking 
for  information  in  order  that  similar  work  may  be  carried  on  in 
their  counties.  State  Librarian  Grillis  is  emphatic  in  his  endorse- 
ment of  the  work  that  has  been  done  in  this  line.  The  teachers' 
library  of  2,500  volumes,  that  heretofore  has  been  practical]  y 
unused,  has  been  turned  over  to  the  county  library  by  Mrs. 
Henshall  and  the  teachers  and  pupils  are  now  receiving  the  benefit 
of  it. 

Fillmore  school  district  was  established  on  February  7,  1910, 
with  an  average  attendance  of  twenty-five  pupils.  New  school 
houses  have  been  erected  in  Pleasant  Prairie,  Fairfield  and  Union 
districts.  The  new  Woodland  high  school  building,  a  reinforced 
concrete  structure  costing  $90,000  and  capable  of  accommodating 
three  hundred  pupils,  is  approaching  completion.  Manual  training 
and  domestic  science  have  been  introduced  in  the  public  school 
curriculum.  For  the  first  time  in  the  history  of  the  county  an 
automobile  has  been  used  by  the  county  superintendent  for  the 
purpose  of  visiting  schools.  By  this  means  teachers,  pupils  and 
superintendents  have  been  brought  into  closer  touch  and  the  effi- 
ciency of  the  schools  greatly  increased. 

On  November  26,  1910,  Miss  Dexter  became  the  wife  of  John 
A.  Henshall,  a  local  newspaper  man.  Mrs.  Henshall  has  taken  a 
prominent  part  in  fraternal  organizations.  She  was  a  charter 
member  of  Woodland  Parlor  No.  90,  N.  D.  G.  W.,  and  is  a  past 
president,  having  filled  every  office  in  the  parlor.  She  is  also  a 
member  of  Yolo  Chapter,  No.  60,  Order  of  the  Eastern  Star. 

Such  is  a  brief  epitome  of  the  life  of  one  of  the  most  promi- 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  227 

nent  and  respected  women  in  Yolo  county.  Like  most  people  who 
are  talented  and  able  to  encompass  great  ends  she  is  modest  and 
unassuming  to  a  degree.  Mrs.  Henshall  has  never  sought,  official 
position,  but  when  requested  to  hold  office  by  men  and  women  who 
had  known  her  all  her  life  she  acquiesced.  It  is  easy  to  discern  tbat 
she  loves  her  work  and  that  her  heart  is  wrapped  up  in  the  welfare 
of  the  children  who  are  soon  to  take  our  places  in  the  great  world. 
She  believes  that  the  educational  problem  is  the  most  important 
of  all  problems  and  during  her  six  years'  incumbency  has  ap- 
proached it  in  that  spirit.  It  is  not  surprising,  therefore,  to  learn 
that  as  the  years  pass  the  esteem  in  which  she  is  held  increases, 
for  a  more  conscientious  official  has  never  held  public  office  in 
this  count  v. 


JAMES  WILLIAM  MONROE 

The  fact  that  he  represents  the  third  generation  of  the 
family,  on  both  the  paternal  and  maternal  sides,  actively  identi- 
fied with  the  material  upbuilding  of  Yolo  county,  is  a  source  of  no 
small  gratification  to  Mr.  Monroe,  who  to  the  honors  associated 
with  the  offices  of  sheriff  and  tax  collector,  adds  the  further  dis- 
tinction of  being  a  native  son  of  the  county.  His  father,  John  T., 
crossed  the  plains  with  his  parents  from  Missouri  to  Oregon  in 
the  early  '50s,  and  in  the  early  '60s  he  came  by  team  to  California, 
where  for  many  years  he  engaged  in  ranching  in  Yolo  county, 
after  which  he  engaged  extensively  in  the  sheep  business  in  Colusa 
county.  Eventually  he  retired  from  active  labors  and  his  last 
days  were  spent  quietly  at  his  home  in  Santa  Barbara  county, 
where  in  1883  his  earth  life  was  ended.  Fraternally  he  was  prom- 
inent in  Masonry  and  in  the  Independent  Order  of  Odd  Fellows. 
Shortly  after  coming  to  Yolo  county  he  formed  the  acquaintance 
of  Miss  Sarah  Campbell  and  they  were  married  at  the  home  of 
her  father,  William  Campbell,  a  pioneer  of  the  early  '50s,  and  a 
man  of  local  prominence,  a  large  rancher  and  a  man  of  sterling 
traits  of  character,  one  who  had  a  wide  acquaintance  among  the 
frontier  settlers.  Judge  James  Monroe,  our  subject's  paternal 
grandfather,  made  his  way  from  Missouri  to  Oregon  in  the  early 
'50s  and  served  as  judge  in  that  slate.  After  coming  to  Yolo 
county  in  the  '60s  he  engaged  in  the  stock  business  until  his  removal 
to  Colusa  county,  where  his  last  days  were  passed. 

The   countv   sheriff    was    horn    in    the    Buckeye    district.    Yolo 


228  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

county,  August  5,  1867,  and  received  the  best  educational  advan- 
tages the  locality  afforded.  During  1884  he  attended  Hesperian 
College  in  Woodland,  and  in  1885-86  he  took  a  course  in  Pierce 
Christian  College  at  College  City.  During  1890  he  entered  the 
Stockton  Business  College,  and  the  following  year  he  completed 
the  course,  graduating  with  honor.  After  his  graduation  he  became 
an  accountant  for  Pratt  &  Manley  at  Fowler,  Fresno  county.  A 
year  later  he  left  their  employ  to  enter  the  Santa  Fe  Railroad 
office  as  clerk  and  ticket  agent,  but  from  that  position  he  was 
summoned  home  to  manage  his  mother's  property.  Upon  his 
return  to  Yolo  county  he  entered  extensively  into  agricultural 
operations  and  for  some  time  followed  the  occupation  with  suc- 
cess, but  eventually  left  the  farm  in  order  to  become  a  buyer  of 
livestock  and  also  to  embark  in  the  butcher  business.  In  his 
business  dealings  with  the  wholesale  merchants  of  San  Fran- 
cisco and  stock  raisers  of  Yolo  county  he  uniformly  has  proved 
reliable,  efficient  and  accurate.  The  esteem  in  which  he  is  held 
results  from  honest  dealings  with  all.  His  word  has  proved  as 
good  as  his  bond.  In  every  instance  integrity  has  been  his  watch- 
word and  square  dealing  has  been  his  creed. 

The  marriage  of  Mr.  Monroe  took  place  April  9,  1902,  and 
united  him  with  Miss  Elvira  Grey  Duncan,  also  born  in  Yolo 
county,  and  they  have  four  children,  Mary  L.,  Forest  D.,  James 
W.,  Jr.,  and  Wyatt  Campbell.  Mrs.  Monroe  is  the  only  daughter 
of  Wyatt  Godfrey  Duncan,  who  settled  in  Yolo  county  about  sixty 
years  ago  and  has  been  identified  with  its  development,  being  one 
of  its  largest  land  owners.  He  is  still  living  on  his  ranch  near 
Capay  and  enjoys  the  esteem  and  affection  of  a  large  circle  of 
friends.  Since  his  election  to  office  Mr.  Monroe  has  resided  with 
his  family  in  Woodland,  having  a  comfortable  home  at  No.  740 
College  street.  In  fraternal  relations  Mr.  Monroe  holds  member- 
ship with  the  Independent  Order  of  Foresters  and  the  Woodmen 
of  the  World.  Always  stanch  in  his  fidelity  to  the  Democratic 
party,  he  has  been  a  leader  in  its  local  councils  and  a  popular 
man  in  its  conventions.  During  a  period  as  county  supervisor 
he  gave  the  closest  attention  to  matters  brought  before  the  board 
for  consideration.  To  each  measure  he  gave  a  vote  based  upon 
his  personal  convictions  of  right  and  wrong.  The  interests  of  the 
tax-payers  were  guarded  and  economy  was  his  watchword,  yet  at 
the  same  time  he  supported  progressive  enterprises.  For  every 
dollar  of  public  money  expended  he  endeavored  to  get  value 
received.  At  times  his  views  were  not  in  accord  with  those  of 
the  majority  of  the  hoard,  but  no  one  questioned  his  sincerity  or 
the  integrity  of  his  purpose.  When  he  was  brought  before  his 
party  as  a  candidate  for  sheriff  and  tax  collector  two  years  after 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  229 

he  had  been  elected  supervisor  of  the  fifth  district,  he  was  nomin- 
ated over  two  of  the  most  influential  and  popular  Democrats  in 
the  county.  The  election  of  1910  showed  that  he  had  won  the 
victory  with  a  flattering  majority,  and  since  entering  upon  his 
duties  he  has  been  fearless  in  their  discharge  and  determined  in 
his  efforts  to  maintain  the  law-abiding  reputation  of  the  county 
where  he  has  been  a  lifelong  resident. 


HON.  GEORGE  W.  PIERCE 

The  eminent  position  among  the  galaxy  of  states  forming  our 
Union  secured  and  maintained  by  California  is  due  to  the  loyal 
devotion,  not  alone  of  her  native-born  citizens,  but  also  of  those 
who  through  long  years  of  association  have  become  imbued  with 
an  intense  affection  for  the  commonwealth  as  well  as  a  sincere 
faith  in  her  future  possibilities.  In  practically  all  else  save  the 
accident  of  birth  Mr.  Pierce  is  a  typical  Calif ornian  and  to  the 
state  where  he  has  lived  since  childhood  he  gives  a  patriotic  Loyalty 
unexcelled  by  the  devotion  of  the  native  sons.  Combined  with 
his  affection  for  the  west  is  an  intelligent  appreciation  of  the  ad- 
vantages offered  by  the  region.  These  qualifications  led  to  his 
selection  by  the  California  Promotion  committee  (composed  of 
successful  busiuess  men  of  San  Francisco  and  other  cities  of  the 
state)  as  lecturer-at-large  to  visit  Kansas,  Nebraska,  Illinois, 
Wisconsin  and  Minnesota,  where  he  delivered  addresses  in  many 
cities  concerning  the  west  and  portrayed  vividly  but  without  exag- 
geration the  prospects  for  future  areatness  of  the  coast  country. 

The  Pierce  family  has  been  represented  in  California  since 
the  year  1852.  George  W.  Pierce,  Sr.,  who  was  born  in  Herkimer 
county,  N.  Y.,  in  1814,  traveled  overland  to  Wisconsin  in  1835  and 
settled  in  Kenosha  county,  where  he  took  up  a  tract  of  raw  land. 
There  he  married  Miss  Eunice  French,  who  was  born  in  Connecti- 
cut October  28,  1821.  For  some  time  the  young  couple  gave  their 
attention  to  the  development  of  a  farm  from  their  unimproved 
claim.  Three  children  were  born  on  that  farm,  but  the  sole  sur- 
vivor is  George  W.,  who  was  born  December  10,  L850.  During 
1852  the  parents  left  him  with  relatives  in  Wisconsin  and  they 
came  overland  to  California,  where  the  father  tried  his  hick  in 
the  mines  of  Eldorado  county.  Removing  in  1S54  to  the  "Big" 
ranch,  owned  by  Hutchinson  &  Green,  he  devoted  his  time  to 
transforming   the   property   into   a    productive   tract.      The    failure 


230  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

of  the  firm  in  1860  put  the  land  on  the  market,  and  lie  bought 
twelve  hundred  acres,  which  for  many  years  he  cultivated.  Re- 
tiring in  1888  to  Davisville,  he  died  in  that  place  in  Fehruarv  of 
1891. 

When  the  first  hardships  of  western  existence  had  been  ended 
and  the  first  obstacles  overcome,  the  parents  decided  to  bring  their 
son  to  the  coast,  and  in  1859  the  mother  returned  to  Wisconsin  for 
him.  In  1860  she  brought  him  to  California  via  Panama,  reach- 
ing San  Francisco  in  May,  1860.  Since  then  George  W.,  Jr.,  has 
known  no  other  home  save  the  west.  Here  he  completed  his 
studies  in  the  public  schools.  In  1875  he  was  graduated  from  the 
department  of  civil  engineering,  University  of  California,  with  the 
degree  of  Ph.  D.,  being  the  first  young  man  from  the  Sacramento 
valley  to  graduate  from  the  institution.  A  thorough  course  in 
civil  engineering  qualified  him  for  successful  work  in  that  difficult 
occupation  and  already  he  had  entered  upon  work  with  the  South- 
ern Pacific  Railroad  Company  when,  owing  to  an  accident  to  his 
father,  he  was  obliged  to  return  home  and  assume  the  management 
of  the  ranch.  After  a  time  his  father  began  to  improve  and  mean- 
while he  had  formulated  plans  for  the  study  of  the  law,  but  again 
ill  health  prostrated  the  parent  and  the  son  finally  abandoned  all 
hope  of  a  professional  career.  The  disappointment  was  keen,  yet 
there  have  been  many  compensations,  not  the  least  of  which  is  the 
high  esteem  in  which  he  is  held  as  an  agriculturist  and  horticul- 
turist and  the  aid  he  has  been  enabled  to  render  the  farming  in- 
terests of  his  county. 

The  ranch  owned  and  operated  by  Mr.  Pierce  comprises 
twelve  hundred  acres  situated  on  Putah  creek  five  miles  west  of 
Davis.  All  of  the  improvements  on  this  splendid  property  have 
been  made  since  the  present  family  took  possession.  One  of  the 
most  valuable  improvements  is  an  orchard  of  one  hundred  and 
fifty  acres  planted  largely  to  almond  and  prune  trees.  For  many 
years  a  large  flock  of  Shropshire  sheep  has  been  kept  on  the  place, 
also  a  fine  drove  of  full-blooded  Shorthorn  cattle,  and  the  sale  of 
the  stock  in  the  general  markets  brings  an  important  annual 
revenue  to  the  owner  of  the  ranch.  Grain  and  other  crops  are 
raised  in  large  quantities  and  with  considerable  profit.  Although 
educated  for  another  occupation  than  agriculture,  the  owner  has 
been  remarkably  successful  in  his  ranching  operations  and  has 
made  of  his  task  a  science  and  a  pleasure  as  well  as  a  source  of 
profit. 

Every  movement  for  the  expansion  of  the  resources  of  Cali- 
fornia receives  the  stanch  aid  of  Mr.  Pierce.  Prominent  in  the 
organization  of  the  Almond  Growers'  Association  of  Davisville, 
lie  served  as  its  vice-president  for  some  years.     Further  he  aided 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  231 

in  organizing  the  California  Grain  Growers'  Association,  which 
held  its  first  convention  in  1902  and  which  has  established  head- 
quarters in  San  Francisco.  Of  this  important  movement  he  has 
officiated  as  president.  The  united  efforts  of  its  members  has 
proved  most  helpful  to  the  grain  interests  of  the  localities  most 
largely  represented  therejn.  When  a  location  of  a  site  for  the 
experiment  farm  of  the  University  of  California  was  under  con- 
sideration there  were  thirteen  counties  offered  sites  and  seventy- 
seven  sites  altogether  were  offered  in  the  various  counties.  Know- 
ing the  fertility  of  the  soil  on  Putah  creek  and  the  central  location 
of  Davis  for  adaptability  and  experimental  purposes,  Mr.  Pierce 
was  foremost  in  advocating  the  location  of  the  farm  at  Davis. 
After  about  fifteen  months  the  commission  decided  on  the  location 
he  had  selected,  securing  for  Yolo  county  the  state  institution. 
It  is  an  interesting  fact  that  fifty  years  prior  to  the  location  this 
farm  secured  the  first  prize  as  the  best  ranch  for  general  farm- 
ing in  California. 

In  1910  Mr.  Pierce  was  selected  by  a  coterie  of  capitalists  as 
an  expert  on  lands  and  soils  to  visit  Panama  and  report  on  the 
condition  and  the  desirability  of  lands  as  an  investment.  He 
spent  about  six  weeks  there,  later  making  an  exhaustive  report  on 
the  country.  In  1911  he  was  sent  to  Arizona  to  examine  copper 
mines.  He  is  the  executive  member  of  the  Yolo  County  Panama- 
Pacific  Fxposition  Commission  and  is  very  active  in  securing  and 
arranging  for  Yolo  county's  representation  and  exhibit  at  the 
Panama-Pacific  Exposition  at  San  Francisco  and  the  California 
Pacific  Exposition  at  San  Diego  in  1915. 

Politically  a  Republican,  Mr.  Pierce  has  been  chosen  t<>  serve  in 
various  posts  of  trust  and  honor,  notably  that  of  representative 
in  the  state  assembly  of  1898,  also  serving  in  the  session  of  1899 
and  the  special  session  of  the  same  term.  Able  service  was  given 
as  a  member  of  the  coiinnittee  on  ways  and  means,  on  education, 
on  public  buildings  and  grounds,  and  on  swamps  and  overflowed 
lands.  His  party  has  utilized  his  services  upon  its  state  central 
committee.  Under  the  administrations  of  Governors  Budd  and 
Gage  he  served  as  a  trustee  of  the  State  Normal  school  at  San 
Jose. 

Mr.  Pierce  was  married  to  Miss  Susan  Gilmore,  a  native  of 
Eldorado  county,  Cal.,  the  daughter  of  Nathan  Gilmore.  who  came 
to  California  from  Indiana  across  the  plain  in  184!).  lie  discovered 
and  founded  Glen  Alpine  Springs,  near  Lake  Tahoe,  and  this  is 
still  in  the  possession  of  his  daughters,  lie  died  in  Placerville. 
Mis.  Gilmore  was  in  maidenhood  Amanda  Cray  of  Kentucky.  She 
came  across  the  plains  to  California  in  1850,  and  died  at  Eldorado. 
The  two  daughters  who  survive  are  Mrs.  .1.   L   Ramsay,  of  Free- 


232  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

water,  Ore.,  and  Mrs.  Pierce.  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Pierce  became  the 
parents  of  four  children,  two  of  whom,  Grilmore  and  Eunice,  died  iu 
infancy.  Two  sons  are  living,  George  G.,  attending  the  University 
of  California,  class  of  1915,  and  Dixwell  Lloyd,  a  pupil  in  the 
Woodland  high  school,  class  of  1914.  In  fraternal  relations  Mr. 
Pierce  is  past  noble  grand  of  Davisville  LQdge  No.  169,  I.  0.  0.  F., 
and  with  his  wife  belongs  to  the  Rebekahs.  In  his  own  locality 
he  is  a  very  influential  citizen  and  the  varied  avenues  of  activity 
that  have  secured  his  co-operation  are  the  richer  and  more  suc- 
cessful for  his  intelligent  support  and  sensible  suggestions. 


OSCAR  E.  JACOBS 

The  earliest  memories  clustering  around  the  distant  days  of 
childhood  are  associated  in  the  mind  of  Mr.  Jacobs  with  Yolo 
county,  its  broad  stretches  of  unimproved  land,  its  tiny  villages,  its 
scanty  population  laboring  against  the  discouragements  of  the 
frontier  and  its  genial  climate  bringing  health  and  sunshine  and 
bountiful  crops  in  compensation  for  the  privations  of  the  pioneers. 
While  he  is  not  a  native  of  the  west  (for  he  was  born  in  Texas 
August  7,  1853,)  in  all  but  the  accident  of  birth  he  is  a  typical 
Californian  and  the  native-born  sons  do  not  surpass  him  in  devotion 
to  the  commonwealth  and  in  loyal  affection  for  the  county  of  his 
home.  Years  of  industry  and  frugal  self-denial  enabled  him  to 
purchase  the  property  where  long  he  had  lived  as  a  tenant  and 
he  now  owns  the  well-improved  farm  of  one  hundred  and  sixty 
acres  lying  near  Black's  Station  and  evidencing  in  its  bountiful 
harvests  the  skill  of  his  husbandry  and  the  sagacity  of  his  super- 
vision. 

The  name  of  Hon.  Isaac  W.  Jacobs,  father  of  Oscar  E.,  is 
honorably  associated  with  the  early  history  of  Yolo  county,  where 
he  engaged  in  the  development  of  farm  property  and  in  the  prac- 
tice of  law,  where  he  filled  a  number  of  offices  with  marked  intel- 
ligence and  bore  a  part  in  early  movements  for  the  local  upbuilding. 
Of  Virginian  birth  and  parentage,  he  read  law  and  was  admitted 
to  the  bar  while  still  making  his  home  in  the  Old  Dominion. 
During  young  manhood  he  removed  to  Missouri  and  opened  a  law 
office  at  Chillicothe,  Livingston  county.  While  living  there  he  mar- 
ried Almira  Elizabeth  Martin,  a  native  of  Virginia.  For  a  few 
months  the  young  couple  made  their  home  in  Texas,  where  a  son, 
Oscar  E.,  was  born,  but  in  a  short  time  thev  returned  to  Missouri 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  233 

and  made  preparations  to  move  to  California,  crossing  the  plains 
in  1854  and  settling  in  Stockton.  In  a  few  months  they  came  to 
Yolo  county  and  bought  a  pre-emption  claim  on  one  hundred  and 
sixty  acres,  later  securing  a  patent  from  the  government.  Estab- 
lishing his  home  on  the  tract  he  cultivated  the  land,  harvested  the 
crops  and  invested  his  earnings  in  other  property  until  he  had 
acquired  the  title  to  four  hundred  acres  of  fertile  land. 

The  development  of  a  valuable  farm  did  not  engross  the 
attention  of  Mr.  Jacobs  to  the  exclusion  of  other  activities,  for  he 
engaged  in  the  practice  of  law  and  served  with  conspicuous  ability 
in  the  offices  of  district  attorney  and  member  of  the  general  as- 
sembly. Eventually  he  retired  from  agricultural  and  professional 
cares  and  in  his  last  days  he  enjoyed  the  leisure  and  the  comforts 
to  which  his  long  labors  justly  entitled  him.  His  wife  passed  away 
in  1903  and  two  years  later  he  also  entered  into  eternal  rest.  In 
the  annals  of  the  county  his  name  is  worthy  of  a  prominent  place, 
for  he  was  one  of  the  pioneers  who  laid  the  foundations  upon  which 
the  present  prosperity  has  been  rendered  possible.  Talented  in 
an  unusual  degree,  he  used  his  abilities  to  promote  the  welfare  of 
his  community  and  proved  a  public-spirited  citizen. 

There  were  eight  sons  and  four  daughters  in  the  parental 
family  of  whom  nine  are  still  living.  Oscar  E.,  who  was  born 
during  the  temporary  sojourn  of  his  parents  in  Texas,  has  lived 
in  California  from  his  earliest  recollections  and  passed  his  boy- 
hood years  on  the  home  farm  in  Yolo  county.  After  he  had  com- 
pleted the  studies  of  the  common  schools  he  was  sent  to  college 
and  remained  for  one  year,  after  which  he  returned  to  Yolo 
county.  Later  with  a  brother  he  went  to  Ventura  comity  and 
entered  four  hundred  acres  of  land,  which  he  worked  for  one  year. 
From  that  county  he  moved  south  to  San  Diego  and  for  a  year  he 
was  employed  in  that  part  of  the  state,  returning  in  1881  to  Yolo 
county.  Shortly  after  his  return  he  rented  a  quarter  section  and 
began  to  operate  the  land.  For  twenty-five  years  he  remained  on 
the  farm  as  a  renter,  meanwhile  saving  with  a  resolute  purpose 
in  view.  At  the  expiration  of  that  time  he  was  in  a  position  to 
purchase  the  ranch.  On  the  property  in  1908  he  erected  a  commo- 
dious residence.  An  excellent  system  of  fencing  divides  the  fields 
from  one  another  and  from  the  pasture.  The  barn  facilities  are 
adequate  for  all  needs.  Durham  cattle  are  raised  in  considerable 
numbers  and  are  of  the  best  grades. 

The  marriage  of  Mr.  Jacobs  took  place  in  San  Diego  Septem- 
ber 12,  1880,  and  united  him  with  Miss  Dora  Caldwell,  who  was 
horn  and  reared  in  California,  being  the  daughter  of  a  Forty-niner, 
Tarleton  Caldwell,  a  native  of  Virginia  and  for  sonic  time  a  suc- 
cessful miner  in  the  west.     Mr.  and  Mrs.  Jacobs  are  the  parents 


234  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

of  three  sons  and  two  daughters.  William  T.,  the  eldest  son,  is 
engaged  in  business  at  Woodland.  O.  E.,  Jr.,  and  Van  V.  are  at 
home,  as  is  also  the  youngest  child,  Berniee  E.  The  older  daughter, 
Eliza,  is  the  wife  of  Rodney  Ely  and  lives  on  a  farm  in  Yolo  county. 
For  years  Mr.  Jacobs  served  as  a  member  of  the  school  hoard  and 
meanwhile  aided  greatly  in  the  development  of  educational  interests. 
Stanch  in  his  advocacy  of  Democratic  principles,  he  has  served  the 
party  as  a  delegate  in  county  conventions  and  in  other  ways  has 
endeavored  to  advance  the  party  success  locally,  but  he  has  not 
sought  office  for  himself  nor  has  he  craved  any  honor  except  that 
of  serving  the  county  as  a  progressive  and  public-spirited  citizen. 


ARTHUR  C.  HUSTON 

Not  only  is  Arthur  C.  Huston  one  of  the  prominent  attorneys 
of  Yolo  county,  but  he  is  also  equally  well  known  in  the  different 
counties  throughout  the  Sacramento  valley  and  the  Bay  region. 
He  is  the  third  generation  of  the  family  to  be  represented  in  the 
state.  His  grandparents,  John  M.  and  Priscilla  (Branham)  Hus- 
ton, left  Kentucky  in  an  early  day  and  became  pioneer  settlers 
in  Missouri,  locating  on  a  farm  that  was  far  from  any  other 
habitation.  Leaving  Missouri  in  1864  they  came  across  the  plains 
to  California  and  settled  in  Big  Valley,  Lake  county,  not  far  from 
Lakeport,  there  carrying  on  farming  until  Mr.  Huston's  advancing 
years  necessitated  retirement  from  active  labor.  He  died  at  the 
age  of  eighty-six,  and  his  wife  when  eighty-two  years  old.  Twelve 
children  were  born  to  this  worthy  couple,  ten  growing  to  years  of 
maturity,  as  follows:  Walter  S.  (deceased),  James,  George,  John 
M.,  Mrs.  Mary  Craig,  Mrs.  Nannie  Gregg,  Robert  M.  (deceased), 
Mrs.  Sarah  Evans   (deceased),  Edward  T.  and  Richard  B. 

Walter  S.  Huston  was  born  October  2,  1830,  in  Boone  county, 
Mo.  As  one  of  the  Argonauts  he  crossed  the  plains  to  California 
during  the  gold  boom  in  1849  and  eagerly  sought  the  fortune 
which  he  expected  awaited  him.  His  first  efforts  were  made  in 
Placerville,  where  during  the  first  twenty-four  hours  he  suc- 
ceeded in  washing  gold  dust  to  the  amount  of  $8,  and  indeed  he 
met  with  fair  returns  during  the  several  months  he  passed  at 
this  camp.  In  1850  he  returned  to  his  native  state  on  a  visit,  but 
the  following  spring  again  found  him  in  California,  and  for 
several  years  thereafter  he  was  engaged  in  freighting  in  Placer 
county.     In  the  '50s  he  came  to  Yolo  county  and  engaged  in  farm- 


^ 


BISTORT  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  237 

ing  near  Woodland,  later  removing  to  Knight's  Landing,  where, 
with  his  brothers  Robert  M.  and  Edward  T.  he  engaged  in  the 
mercantile  business.  Coming  to  Woodland  in  1878  he  established 
himself  in  the  grocery  business,  a  venture  that  proved  more  suc- 
cessful than  he  had  anticipated.  In  recognition  of  his  excellent 
qualities  his  fellow-citizens  elected  him  to  the  office  of  city  trus- 
tee, and  they  also  honored  him  with  the  office  of  deputy  assessor. 
He  was  an  earnest  member  of  the  Christian  Church  and  was  deeply 
interested  in  educational  progress,  and  none  more  than  he  assisted 
in  establishing  Hesperian  College  of  Woodland  upon  a  substan- 
tial footing.  He  was  also  one  of  the  foremost  factors  in  the 
establishment  of  the  fire  department  in  this  city.  As  one  of  the 
state's  early  settlers  he  assisted  in  forming  and  was  one  of  the 
charter  members  of  the  California  Pioneers'  Society  of  San  Fran- 
cisco. Fraternally  he  belonged  to  the  Ancient  Order  of  United 
Workmen.  His  first  marriage  united  him  with  Miss  Sarah  E. 
Robinson,  who  died  January  26,  1860.  On  January  20,  1869,  he 
was  united  in  marriage  with  Miss  Sarah  Laugenour,  a  native  of 
Salem,  N.  C.  Of  the  second  marriage  six  children  were  born,  one 
daughter  dying  in  infancy,  and  the  others  are  as  follows:  Bertha, 
now  Mrs.  J.  L.  Hare  of  Woodland;  Walter  S.  and  Edward  P., 
both  of  Sacramento;  Arthur  C,  the  subject  of  this  sketch;  and 
Harry  L.,  an  attorney  of  Woodland. 

Arthur  C.  Huston  was  born  November  16,  1871,  at  Knight's 
Landing,  and  received  a  public  school  education,  after  which  he 
became  a  pupil  in  Hesperian  College.  Following  this  he  engaged 
in  mercantile  pursuits  for  a  time,  but  the  literary  6eld  attracted 
him  so  strongly  that  he  took  up  journalism,  and  later  became 
city  editor  of  the  Mail  and  Woodland  Democrat,  respectively. 
He  also  filled  the  office  of  deputy  county  recorder.  A  long  cher- 
ished desire  to  study  law  began  to  be  fulfilled  when  he  accepted 
a  position  in  the  law  office  of  Charles  W.  Thomas,  there  pursuing 
his  legal  studies  until  January  16,  1895,  when  he  was  admitted  to 
the  bar.  For  the  past  sixteen  years  he  has  followed  the  practice 
of  bis  profession  with  splendid  success,  his  suite  of  offices  being 
located  at  Main  and  Second  streets,  and  equipped  with  a  well- 
selected  law  library.  In  1897  he  filled  the  office  of  city  attorney 
and  under  R.  E.  Hopkins  and  E.  R.  Bush  acted  as  assistant  dis- 
trict attorney. 

Before  her  marriage  Mrs.  A.  C.  Huston  was  Elizabeth  Brown- 
ing, the  daughter  of  Robert  Browning,  who  was  a  pioneer  settler 
and  rancher  of  Y'olo  county.  Two  sons  were  born  to  Mr.  and 
Mrs.  Huston,  Arthur  C.  and  Robert  W.  Mr.  Huston  is  past  presi- 
dent of  Woodland  Parlor  No.  30,  N.  S.  G.  W.  He  was  made  a 
Mason   in   Woodland   Lodge  No.   156,  F.   &  A.   M.,   of  which   he   is 


238  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

past  master,  is  a  member  of  Woodland  Chapter  No.  46,  R.  A.  M., 
of  which  he  is  past  high  priest,  and  he  is  also  a  member  of  Wood- 
land Connnandery  No.  21,  K.  T.,  being  past  eminent  commander, 
and  he  is  also  identified  with  the  Order  of  the  Eastern  Star. 


H.  T.  BARNES  &  SON 

No  modern  development  in  the  building  business  has  affected 
more  vitally  the  permanent  character  of  such  work  than  the  intro- 
duction and  increasing  use  of  cement,  which,  utilized  in  founda- 
tions or  for  entire  structures  as  well  as  in  sidewalks,  bridges  and 
vaults,  has  proved  an  indispensable  factor  in  the  industrial  growth 
of  every  community.  The  firm  of  H.  T.  Barnes  &  Son,  organized 
in  1906,  represents  the  results  of  years  of  activity  on  the  part  of 
the  older  member  of  the  concern,  who  for  thirty  years  or  more 
has  engaged  in  cement  work  in  Woodland  and  vicinity.  Mean- 
while he  has  had  charge  of  the  building  of  practically  all  of  the 
sidewalks  in  the  town,  has  erected  cement  dairies  in  the  country 
and  has  built  vaults  and  walls  in  the  cemetery,  besides  erecting 
a  fine  monument  of  reinforced  concrete  in  the  city  cemetery.  The 
first  concrete  foundation  in  this  part  of  Yolo  county  was  put 
under  his  residence  at  No.  524  Walnut  street,  Woodland,  and 
since  then  an  almost  universal  adoption  of  such  foundations  has 
followed.  Many  of  these  have  been  put  in  place  under  his  super- 
vision,  including  the  foundation  for   the   Odd   Fellows'   Building. 

A  superior  quality  of  cement  always  has  been  used.  In  earlier 
days  much  of  this  was  imported  from  Germany,  Belgium  and  Eng- 
land, but  more  recently  the  product  manufactured  in  Solano  and 
Napa  counties  has  grown  in  popular  favor  and  its  practicability 
has  been  proved  by  actual  experience.  About  twenty-seven  years 
ago  Mr.  Barnes  built  a  reinforced  culvert  bridge  with  steel  rods, 
being  the  first  resident  of  the  entire  county  to  attempt  such  work. 
Ten  years  later  reinforced  work  was  patented.  As  early  as  1894 
he  erected  at  the  Yolo  Orchard  a  reinforced  concrete  packing 
house,  50x100  feet  in  dimensions  and  two  and  one-half  stories 
high.  Although  on  two  different  occasions  fire  has  broken  out 
in  this  packing  house  and  threatened  its  destruction,  its  walls  are 
still  standing  firm  and  substantial  as  when  first  erected.  Besides 
his  work  in  this  locality  he  has  had  contracts  at  Suisun,  Solano 
county,  and  in  other  counties.  The  joint  bridge  between  Yolo  and 
Solano  county,  of  which  he  was  the  inspector  and  which  was  built 


HISTORY  OB"  YOLO  COUNTY  239 

in  1906,  has  three  spans,  each  one  hundred  and  twenty-five  feet 
long,  and  merits  especial  mention  on  account  of  being  the  largest 
bridge  of  its  kind  west  of  Kansas  City.  In  1911  he  was  inspector 
on  the  facing  of  levees  two  and  one-half  miles  long  in  the  Lisbon 
district;  said  reinforced  facing  would  equal  an  area  of  twelve  and 
one-half  acres.  In  it  were  used  over  twenty  thousand  barrels  of 
cement,  and  it  is  considered  the  largest  space  covered  continuously 
in  the  United   States. 

Of  Canadian  birth  and  parentage,  Henry  Thomas  Barnes  was 
born  near,  the  city  of  Toronto  April  14,  1857.  At  the  age  of  four- 
teen years  he  lost  by  death  his  father,  John  Barnes,  and  then  went 
to  Michigan,  where  he  served  an  apprenticeship  under  a  merchant 
tailor.  The  occupation  proved  too  sedentary  for  his  health  and 
he  sought  outdoor  employment,  thus  having  his  attention  called 
to  the  cement  business,  in  which  he  has  been  unqualifiedly  success- 
ful. After  he  came  to  California  in  1879  he  endeavored  to  resume 
tailoring,  but  a  short  period  of  work  proved  too  confining  and  he 
left  San  Francisco  for  Woodland  in  1882.  In  the  marble  yard  of 
H.  P.  Martin  he  found  employment  congenial  to  his  tastes  and 
suited  to  his  physical  demands.  Here  he  began  to  interest  people 
in  cement  work.  His  predecessors  had  been  so  unsuccessful  that 
would-be  buyers  were  suspicious  of  the  industry,  but  Mr.  Barnes 
soon  proved  that  he  thoroughly  understood  the  proper  propor- 
tions of  sand  and  cement  necessary  for  permanent  results.  Side- 
walks laid  by  him  years  ago  are  as  solid'  today  as  when  first  laid. 
Forming  a  partnership  with  J.  0.  Shaffer  in  1883  he  opened  a 
marble  yard  and  plant  for  the  manufacture  of  cement  products 
on  Main  street,  opposite  the  Pacific  hotel,  but  when  his  partner 
died  a  year  later  he  discontinued  the  marble  business,  since  which 
time  he  has  devoted  his  energies  to  the  erection  of  concrete  bridges, 
culverts,  foundations,  fence  posts,  water  troughs,  tanks,  houses, 
business  structures,  and  indeed,  the  many  purposes  to  which  cement 
is  applicable. 

When  he  came  to  Woodland  in  1882  Mr.  Barnes  was  unmar- 
ried. November  5,  1884,  he  married  Miss  Mollie  Cosby,  a  native 
of  St.  Charles  county,  Mo.,  and  a  daughter  of  Josiah  Cosby  of  that 
state.  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Barnes  are  the  parents  of  two  children, 
Cosby  H.  (his  father's  partner)  and  Ruth.  Fraternally  he  holds 
membership  with  the  Woodland  lodge  of  Masons,  chapter  and  com 
mandery,  and  with  the  lodge  and  encampment  of  Odd  Fellows 
and  the  Woodmen  of  the  World.  For  many  years  Mr.  Barnes 
was  a  member  of  the  board  of  trustees  of  the  Odd  Fellows'  Hall, 
besides  having  served  as  noble  grand  and  for  four  terms  filling 
the  post  of  district  deputy  grand  master  and  two  terms  as  dis- 
trict   deputy   grand    patriarch    of   the    encampment.      In    tin'    Re 


240  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

bekaks,  to  which  he  and  his  wife  belong,  the  latter  has  served  as 
noble  grand,  and  they  are  also  both  members  of  the  Order  of 
Eastern  Star.  The  Methodist  Episcopal  Church  South  has  received 
their  earnest  support,  and  Mr.  Barnes  for  years  gave  the  most 
efficient  service  as  superintendent  of  the  Sunday  school.  As  a 
member  of  the  First  Rifle  Team  he  accompanied  his  command 
from  California  to  the  meet  at  Seagirt,  X.  J.,  the  government  de- 
fraying all  expenses.  For  seven  years  he  was  a  member  of  the 
California  National  Guard  and  retired  with  the  rank  of  sergeant 
of  Company  F,  Second  California  Regiment,  to  which  his  son 
and  partner  also  has  belonged  for  the  past  five  years  or  more. 

The  junior  member  of  the  firm,  Cosby  H.  Barnes,  is  a  native 
son  of  Woodland,  born  June  1,  1886.  After  completing  his  edu- 
cation he  was  for  a  time  employed  with  the  Wells,  Fargo  Com- 
pany. Having  learned  the  cement  business  from  a  youth,  in  1906 
he  joined  his  father  in  the  business  and  since  then  has  been  ac- 
tively interested  with  him.  He  was  married  in  Woodland,  Decem- 
ber 30,  1906,  to  Miss  Hazel  Irene  Roberts,  who  was  born  near 
Woodland,  and  to  them  have  been  born  two  children,  Virginia 
Elberta  and  Elwood  Henry.  For  six  years  he  has  been  and  still  is 
a  member  of  Company  F,  Second  Regiment  of  California,  and 
served  with  the  regiment  at  the  San  Francisco  fire  in  1906.  In 
1911  he  was  a  member  of  the  team  that  won  the  regimental  cup 
and  also  the  lodge  state  cup.  He  holds  membership  in  Woodland 
Lodge  of  Masons  and  encampment  of  the  Odd  Fellows,  in  which 
he  is  a  past  grand,  and  he  is  also  a  member  of  the  Woodmen  of 
the  World. 


RICHARD  HENDERSON  BEAMER 

The  development  of  the  Sacramento  valley,  not  only  from  the 
standpoint  of  financial  stability,  but  also  from  the  side  of  com- 
mercial growth,  has  been  fostered  through  the  sagacious  leader- 
ship of  the  First  National  Bank,  formerly  the  Farmers  and  Mer- 
chants Bank,  an  institution  well  known  in  Woodland  and  in  all  of 
the  surrounding  country.  As  a  financial  concern  it  has  achieved 
a  wide  reputation  for  conservative  spirit,  local  pride,  keen  super- 
vision and  an  important  list  of  depositors.  Its  officers  are  without 
exception  men  of  fine  mental  attributes  and  ability  as  financiers. 
Guarding  the  investments  of  their  stockholders  with  wise  cau- 
tion, they  yet  have  proved  of  the  utmost  importance  to  the  perma- 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  243 

nent  advancement  of  their  home  city  through  their  judicious  exten- 
sion of  credit  to  men  hampered  by  want  of  capital,  and  in  every 
instance  the  wisdom  of  their  confidence  has  been  proved  by  actual 
results. 

Coming  into  the  office  of  president,  some  seven  or  more  years 
after  the  organization  of  the  Farmers  and  Merchants  Bank,  Mr. 
Beamer  soon  impressed  upon  the  institution  the  influence  of  his 
strong,  virile  personality.  The  results  of  his  executive  manage- 
ment permeated  the  community  with  a  distinct  effect  upon  its 
permanent  upbuilding.  The  valley  has  achieved  a  prosperity 
more  vital  and  lasting  than  would  have  been  possible  without  the 
presence  of  the  bank,  working  through  its  officers  for  the  bene- 
fit of  the  entire  region,  and  its  president  has  been  particularly 
helpful  in  establishing  for  the  concern  a  position  as  sound,  reliable 
and  conservative.  At  the  time  that  he  was  chosen  president, 
November  9,  1901,  F.  Miller  was  selected  for  the  office  of  vice- 
president,  M.  0.  Harling  was  re-elected  cashier,  and  J.  M.  Day 
was  made  the  accountant.  At  the  report  of  September,  1903,  the 
capital  stock  was  shown  to  lie  $200,000,  the  assets  were  large  and 
the  surplus  increasing.  Since  then  the  capital  has  been  equally 
divided,  and  it  is  now  the  First  National  Bank  and  Home  Savings 
Bank  of  Woodland,  with  equal  proportions  of  the  capital  stock  and 
surplus.  On  January  20,  1910,  Mr.  Beamer  resigned  as  president 
of  the  bank  to  take  the  position  of  state  bank  examiner,  which 
he  filled  during  the  administration  of  Superintendent  of  Banks 
Alden   Anderson. 

The  Farmers  and  Merchants  Bank  of  Woodland  was  estab- 
lished September  26,  1892,  with  the  following  directorate:  David 
N.  Hershey,  C.  G.  Day,  Col.  D.  M.  Burns,  W  G.  Hunt,  M.  Diggs, 
Thomas  Ross,  Richard  H.  Beamer,  L.  B.  Adams,  George  H.  Jack- 
son and  D.  R.  Clanton.  The  concern  was  incorporated  through 
the  work  of  a  special  committee  comprising  Messrs.  Adams,  Day, 
Diggs,  Ross,  Beamer  and  Burns.  Vacant  property  was  bought  at 
the  northwest  corner  of  Main  and  First  streets  in  1893.  Sep- 
tember 26  of  that  year  the  work  of  building  was  begun  with  J.  J. 
Hall  as  architect  and  D.  McPhee  as  contractor.  The  building, 
which  is  three  stories  in  height  and  built  of  Arizona  red  sandstone, 
cost  $31,205,  exclusive  of  interior  fittings  and  furnishings.  The 
first  floor  is  occupied  by  the  bank  and  the  other  suites  are  utilized 
for  office  purposes.  The  building  is  heated  by  steam  and  lighted 
by  gas  and  electricity,  while  a  fireproof  room  enables  customers 
to  deposit  valuable  papers  in  a  vault  constructed  by  the  Diebold 
Safe  and  Lock  Company.  Modern  conveniences  enable  the  occu- 
pants of  the  building  to  transact  business  with  dispatch  in  the 
midst   of  comfortable  surroundings. 


244  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

Born  in  Missouri,  July  29,  1849,  Richard  Henderson  Beamer 
is  a  son  of  Richard  L.  Beamer,  a  native  of  Virginia.  Primarily 
educated  in  local  schools,  he  later  was  sent  to  the  Hesperian  Col- 
lege and  then  attended  the  University  of  Kentucky  at  Lexington. 
December  20,  1870,  he  married  Miss  Mary  E.  Hodgen,  a  native  of 
Kentucky.  The  young  couple  enjoyed  a  wedding  tour  that  brought 
them  to  the  west  and  they  settled  in  Yolo  county,  where  for  years 
Mr.  Beamer  engaged  in  ranching.  He  platted  Beamer 's  addition 
to  Woodland,  comprising  eighty  acres.  He  built  his  comfortable 
home  on  North  Third  street,  where  he  resided  with  his  family.  His 
wife  died  at  the  age  of  forty-nine  years,  and  two  of  their  chil- 
dren died  when  young.  The  other  members  of  the  family  are 
Dr.  Richard  F.  Beamer,  a  dentist  in  San  Francisco;  Daisy  Irene, 
wife  of  C.  B.  Hobson  of  Berkeley;  Blanche  H.  of  Woodland,  and 
Joseph,  assistant  collection  teller  of  the  First  National  Bank  of 
San   Francisco. 

Stanchly  devoted  to  the  Democratic  party,  Mr.  Beamer  has 
been  prominent  in  the  local  councils  of  the  party.  From  1872 
to  1874  he  served  as  county  auditor,  after  which  he  held  office  as 
assessor  four  years.  During  1885  he  was  chosen  sheriff,  and  that 
office  he  filled  with  courage  and  energy.  His  party  nominated  him 
to  represent  Yolo  and  Napa  counties  in  the  state  senate,  but  he 
declined  the  honor,  although  the  nomination  was  equivalent  to  an 
election.  For  a  long  period  he  rendered  efficient  service  as  a 
member  of  the  state  board  of  equalization  and  for  one  term  he 
held  office  as  mayor  of  Woodland,  in  which  position  he  promoted 
the  progress  of  the  city  by  his  intelligent  sympathy  with  all 
movements  for  the  general  welfare.  Since  he  retired  from  the 
state  bank  examiner's  office  he  has  devoted  his  attention  to  his 
varied  interests  and  is  serving  as  the  representative  appointed  by 
the  supervisors  of  Yolo  county  to  secure  the  state  highway  for 
the  west  side  of  the  Sacramento  river.  Fraternally  Mr.  Beamer 
is  a  Mason  and  an  Odd  Fellow,  and  also  belongs  to  the  Knights 
of  Pythias.  He  is  one  of  Woodland's  most  dependable  citizens 
and  is  always  giving  of  his  time  and  means  to  promote  the  com- 
mercial importance  of  his  community  and  county. 


CHARLES  E.  GREENE,  Sb. 

Among  the  wave  of  emigrants  who  left  the  east  to  answer 
the  call  of  the  Southern  California  gold  fields  in  1849  was  C.  E. 
Greene,  who  passed  away  July  10,  1886,  at  his  home  near  Davis, 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  247 

after  laboring  with  other  brave  pioneers  nearly  thirty  years  to 
bring  to  a  state  of  beauty  and  production  the  vast  tracts  of  virgin 
land  in  Yolo  county,  which  awaited  the  touch  of  the  home- 
steader. Born  in  Sherburne,  Vt.,  in  1824,  be  received  bis  educa- 
tion in  the  local  schools  of  Vermont  and  New  York  state.  Dur- 
ing the  excitement  occasioned  by  the  discovery  of  gold  in  Cali- 
fornia in  1849  he  left  his  boyhood  home  in  company  with  others, 
making  the  journey  by  ox-teams,  and  after  a  trying  and  hazard- 
ous trip  finally  reached  Sacramento.  For  a  year  thereafter  he 
worked  in  the  mines  with  success,  and  later  was  engaged  in  tbe 
mercantile  business  in  Sacramento.  In  1852  be  settled  on  Putah 
creek,  where  he  carried  on  farming  on  an  extensive  scale,  later 
purchasing  a  tract  of  twelve  hundred  and  eighty  acres  of  valu- 
able land  located  five  miles  from  Davis,  upon  which  he  made 
a  specialty  of  grain  raising. 

Mr.  Greene  was  united  in  marriage  in  Sacramento  in  1855, 
with  Miss  Bertha  L.  Bennett,  who  was  born  in  Muscatine  county, 
Iowa,  and  whose  parents,  Milo  and  Mary  (Gibson)  Bennett,  were 
among  the  first  settlers  of  Sacramento  in  1851,  having  crossed  the 
plains  that  year.  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Greene  were  blessed  with  three 
children:  Mrs.  B.  B.  Tuttle,  Mrs.  Col.  James  Jackson,  and  Charles 
E.,  Jr.  Identified  with  all  public  movements  of  merit,  Mr.  Greene 
was  known  throughout  the  county  as  a  man  of  the  highest 
worth  and  to  those  who  had  the  privilege  of  knowing  him  best, 
the  memory  of  his  life  will  ever  remain  an  encouragement  and  a 
blessing;. 


WILLIAM  A.  ANDERSON 

Prior  to  the  discovery  of  sold  that  made  California  the 
Eldorado  for  the  aspiring  purposes  of  the  youth  from  many  lands, 
there  crossed  the  plains  with  a  large  expedition  of  wagons  and 
oxen,  a  sturdy  young  man  of  eighteen  years,  Thomas  Anderson, 
a  native  of  Cincinnati,  Ohio,  and  a  member  of  a  pioneer  family 
whose  limited  means  prevented  him  from  receiving  any  great 
educational  advantages  or  any  business  training  except  such  as 
appeared  in  an  apprenticeship  to  the  trade  of  a  carriage-maker. 
However,  the  lack  of  means  did  not  prove  a  handicap  to  one  pos- 
sessing resolution  of  spirit  and  energy  of  character;  with  the 
courage  characteristic  of  the  frontiersman  he  left  the  associates 
of  early  life  to  cast  in  his  fortunes  with  an  unknown  land.     About 


248  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

two  years  after  his  arrival  in  California  gold  was  discovered  at 
Sutter's  camp,  and  the  tide  of  emigration  swiftly  turned  toward 
this  point  from  all  portions  of  the  civilized  world.  The  incoming 
of  settlers  created  a  demand  for  vehicles  and  he  found  employ- 
ment in  the  making  of  wagons  and  carriages.  For  some  years 
he  had  business  headquarters  at  Sacramento,  where  at  one  time 
he  owned  the  site  of  the  Western  hotel.  The  floods  and  fires  of 
early  days  caused  him  heavy  losses,  but  it  was  his  privilege  to 
live  until  prosperity  had  cast  its  benediction  upon  the  west,  and 
when  he  died  in  1886  the  town  which  he  remembered  as  a  typical 
headquarters  for  miners  had  developed  into  a  populous,  refined 
and  progressive  city.  With  a  distaste  for  politics,  he  had  never 
allowed  his  name  to  be  presented  as  candidate  for  any  of  the  local 
offices,  but  on  one  occasion  he  accepted  a  position  as  deputy  in  the 
office  of  the  county  treasurer,  and  during  the  several  years  of  his 
service  in  that  capacity  his  books  were  said  to  be  models  of  accuracy 
and  neatness. 

For  a  long  period  subsequent  to  his  arrival  in  the  west  Thomas 
Anderson  remained  a  bachelor,  but  eventually  he  established  a  home 
of  his  own,  choosing  as  his  wife  Miss  Katherine  Leigh,  who  was 
born  in  Louisiana  and  came  to  California  with  her  parents  dur- 
ing the  early  '50s.  Her  death  occurred  in  1879,  at  which  time 
her  son,  William  A.,  who  was  born  August  6,  1875,  was  too  young 
to  realize  the  heavy  bereavement  that  had  fallen  upon  the  family. 
There  were  nine  children  altogether,  but  only  three  are  now  living. 
Lillie  is  the  wife  of  E.  F.  Haswell  of  Eumsey,  and  Rose  married 
T.  D.  Parker  of  Winters.  The  only  surviving  son,  who  is  now 
one  of  the  most  prominent  attorneys  of  Woodland,  received  his 
education  primarily  in  the  public  schools,  later  under  a  private 
tutor,  and  finally  in  the  San  Francisco  Business  College,  from 
which  he  was  graduated  in  1891.  Immediately  afterward  he  took 
up  the  study  of  law,  which  he  completed  in  the  office  of  C.  W. 
Thomas  of  Woodland.  Since  being  admitted  to  the  bar,  in  Janu- 
ary of  1897,  he  has  engaged  in  the  practice  of  his  profession  at 
Woodland,  where  he  has  risen  to  influence  among  the  members 
of  the  bar.  Near  the  city  on  Cache  creek  he  has  a  finely  improved 
vineyard,  and  to  it  he  gives  personal  attention,  finding  recreation 
and  relaxation  in  the  change  from  arduous  mental  labors  to 
interesting  outdoor  activities. 

Two  children,  Wilella  and  George  Clark,  comprise  the  family 
of  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Anderson,  the  latter  of  whom  was  Ella  Arm- 
strong, a  native  of  Reno,  Nev.,  and  a  graduate  of  the  San  Jose 
Normal  school.  She  is  a  daughter  of  Alexander  Armstrong,  one 
of  the  leading  pioneers  of  Yolo  county.  The  family  are  identified 
with  the  Christian  Church,  and  Mr.  Anderson  is  numbered  among 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  249 

the  liberal  contributors  to  its  work  in  Woodland.  As  past  presi- 
dent he  holds  official  relations  with  Woodland  Parlor  No.  30,  N.  S. 
U.  W.  Besides  being  connected  with  the  Independent  Order  of 
Odd  Fellows  he  is  also  a  member  of  Woodland  Circle,  Companions 
of  Foresters,  the  Foresters  of  America,  and  is  now  serving  as 
Junior  Beadle  of  the  Grand  Court  of  California. 

The  principles  of  the  Republican  party  always  have  received 
the  intelligent  support  of  Mr.  Anderson,  who,  while  not  entering 
into  partisan  affairs,  nevertheless  is  numbered  among  the  leading- 
men  of  Woodland  in  civic  and  political  affairs.  When  in  July  of 
1898  District  Attorney  Hopkins  left  Yolo  county  on  account  of 
illness,  Mr.  Anderson  took  charge  of  the  office  for  the  balance  of 
the  term,  retiring  in  January  of  1899.  During  April  following 
he  was  elected  city  attorney  of  Woodland  and  served  for  a  term 
of  two  years.  Nominated  for  district  attorney  in  1902,  on  the  face 
of  the  returns  he  was  elected,  in  evidence  whereof  a  certificate  of 
election  was  tendered  him.  Eventually,  however,  he  was  counted 
out  through  a  technicality,  but  not  until  he  had  filled  the  office 
for  two  years,  attending  to  all  of  the  work  incident  thereto  and 
drawing  his  salary  at  regular  intervals.  When  the  final  decision 
was  rendered  he  relinquished  the  office,  but  in  the  autumn  of 
1906  he  was  elected  by  a  most  emphatic  majority.  A  service  of 
four  years  proved  satisfactory  to  the  people,  and  he  retired  in 
January  of  1911  with  every  evidence  of  success  in  the  important 
position.  He  was  the  first  district  attorney  for  fifty  years  who 
obtained  a  sentence  of  hanging  in  the  prosecution  of  murder  in 
Yolo  county.  One  of  his  most  important  responsibilities  was  the 
planning  for  and  signing  of  a  contract  for  the  erection  of  a  steel 
railroad  bridge  over  the  the  Sacramento  river,  the  same  to  cost 
$1,000,000.  Much  to  the  discomfort  of  the  railroad  officials,  he 
held  off  from  signing  a  contract  until  he  had  secured  one  that 
was  satisfactory  and  protected  the  people's  rights.  Not  only  in 
this  matter,  but  in  all  enterprises  of  grave  importance  to  the  tax- 
payers, he  represented  the  people  with  fidelity,  intelligence  and 
tact,  while  as  a  private  citizen,  no  less  than  when  in  public  office, 
he  has  proved  patriotic,  loyal  and  alert  to  advance  the  prosperity 
of  city  and  commonwealth. 


JOSEPH  G-ERMESHAUSEN 

More   than   fifty   years   have   brought   their   interesting   series 
of  progress  since  first  Joseph  Germeshausen  arrived  in  Woodland. 


250  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

The  city  that  now  spreads  its  thriving  expanse  of  commerce  over 
the  valley  held  little  at  that  time  to  arouse  the  admiration  of  a 
newcomer.  A  few  small  houses  gave  homes  to  the  pioneers  who, 
in  the  midst  of  primeval  surroundings,  were  endeavoring  to  earn 
their  livelihoods.  On  every  hand  could  be  seen  the  great  forests 
with  their  wealth  of  timber  and  their  abundance  of  game.  Fre- 
quently deer  in  considerable  numbers  appeared  within  the  town 
limits.  A  skilled  marksman  was  able  to  keep  his  family  supplied 
with  venison  as  well  as  other  game  during  the  season.  When 
the  environment  of  that  period  is  contrasted  with  the  improve- 
ments characteristic  of  the  twentieth  century,  an  appreciation 
is  aroused  in  behalf  of  the  early  settlers  whose  rugged  self-reliance 
and  keen  foresight  rendered  possible  present  conditions  of  pros- 
perity. 

Not  the  least  important  of  these  pioneers  is  Joseph  Germes- 
hausen,  who  was  born  in  Prussia,  Germany,  March  25,  1836,  grew 
to  manhood  upon  the  home  farm,  attended  the  schools  of  his 
native  land  and  in  1856  crossed  the  ocean  to  New  York  City,  land- 
ing with  little  money  and  less  knowledge  of  our  language  and 
customs.  It  was  possible,  however,  for  the  sturdy  young  German 
to  secure  immediate  employment  and  he  continued  in  the  metrop- 
olis until  1861,  when  the  opportunities  of  California  attracted 
him  to  the  west.  Associated  with  his  brother,  Barney,  he  went 
to  Leavenworth,  Kans.,  and  bought  a  mule  team  and  wagon,  also 
laid  in  an  abundance  of  supplies  for  the  long  overland  journey. 
It  was  his  good  fortune  to  accompany  a  train  of  thirteen  wagons 
that  encountered  no  vexatious  delays  and  no  hostility  from  In- 
dians, but  pushed  forward  with  such  persistence  that  they  reached 
Virginia  City,  New,  in  four  months  from  the  time  of  leaving 
Leavenworth.  A  short  stop  in  the  western  mining  town  was  fol- 
lowed by  removal  to  Yolo  county  during  the  fall  of  1861,  when 
Woodland  was  seen  for  the  first  time  and  the  surrounding  country 
carefully   inspected. 

It  is  significant  of  the  favorable  impression  created  in  the 
mind  of  Mr.  Germeshausen  by  the  appearance  of  Yolo  county 
in  its  then  undeveloped  condition  that  he  immediately  took  up 
land  and  started  to  raise  grain.  The  tract  which  he  selected 
comprises  three  hundred  and  twenty  acres  and  lies  in  close  prox- 
imity to  Plainfield,  its  distance  from  Woodland  being  about  nine 
miles.  From  that  early  period  to  the  present  he  has  continued 
to  own  and  superintend  the  same  property.     For  years  he  ocou- 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  251 

pied  the  ranch,  tilled  the  soil,  sowed  the  grain,  harvested  the 
crops  and,  indeed,  with  his  own  energetic  hands  managed  the 
entire  place,  hut  eventually  he  removed  to  Woodland  in  1882,  and 
the  ranch  is  now  occupied  and  operated  by  his  youngest  son,  Dan- 
iel. After  he  moved  into  the  city  he  purchased  the  Yolo  brewery 
from  Miller  &  Schuerle,  and  later  he  organized  the  Yolo  Brewing 
Company,  of  which  he  continued  to  be  the  president  as  well  as 
the  manager  until  a  few  years  since,  when  he  retired  to  private 
life,  relinquishing  to  others  the  supervision  of  the  important  in- 
dustry he  had  fostered  and  enlarged.  He  still  serves  as  a  director 
in  the  First  National  Bank  of  Woodland,  in  which  for  years  he 
has  been  a  holder  of  a  large  amount  of  stock. 

Ever  since  making  a  study  of  political  questions  in  this  coun- 
try Mr.  Germeshausen  has  voted  with  the  Republican  party  and 
supported  its  principles  with  unwavering  zeal.  He  came  to  this 
county  a  young  man,  unmarried,  and  it  was  not  until  some  years 
later  that  he  established  domestic  ties,  his  marriage  in  1868  unit- 
ing him  with  Miss  Mary  Selma  Beck,  a  native  of  Wurtemberg, 
Germany,  but  from  early  life  a  resident  of  Woodland.  They  are 
the  parents  of  seven  children  now  living.  It  was  their  misfor- 
tune to  lose  two  of  their  sons,  Joseph,  Jr.,  and  William,  when  they 
were  about  twenty-seven  years  of  age.  The  surviving  sons  re- 
main in  Yolo  county:  Beno  is  clerk  at  the  Pacific  house,  this  city; 
Edwin  is  a  blacksmith  in  Woodland,  and  Daniel  is  the  manager 
of  the  old  homestead.  The  eldest  daughter,  Lena,  is  the  wife  of 
Fred  Ewert,  of  this  city;  Selma,  Mrs.  Abele,  resides  near  Cache- 
ville;  Katherina  is  Mrs.  Gumbinger,  of  Woodland,  and  Minnie 
married  Ben  Harling,  also  of  this  city. 


RICHARD  ALGE 

An  identification  with  the  business  interests  of  Woodland 
covering  practically  the  entire  period  from  1878  to  the  present 
time  gives  to  Mr.  Alge  the  prestige  connected  with  pioneer  citi- 
zenship and  the  influence  associated  with  successful  activities. 
As  a  friendless  immigrant  to  the  shores  of  America  his  experi- 
ence was  not  dissimilar  to  that  of  thousands  of  young  aliens,  who. 


252  HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

brave  in  hope  but  penniless  in  purse,  seek  the  rich  opportunities 
of  the  new  world.  In  the  midst  of  a  people  whose  language 
sounded  strange  to  his  ears  and  whose  broad  prairies  presented 
a  forlorn  aspect  to  his  vision  he  began  the  task  of  earning  a 
livelihood,  a  task  whose  possibilities  seemed  indeed  limited  until  a 
fortunate  decision  brought  him  to  California  and  thus  started 
him  in  the  upward  path  of  progress.  Throughout  the  entire 
period  of  his  residence  in  the  west  he  has  been  interested  in  the 
meat  business,  first  as  an  employe  in  a  market,  later  for  years 
as  the  energetic  co-partner  in  a  flourishing  establishment,  but 
more  recently  only  from  the  standpoint  of  a  retired  market  owner, 
whose  attention  is  now  concentrated  upon  the  shipment  of  live- 
stock to  San  Francisco  and  the  management  of  his  property 
interests  in  and  near  Woodland. 

About  the  middle  of  the  nineteenth  century  there  resided  in 
Voralberg,  Austria,  a  farmer'  and  educator  named  Joseph  Alge, 
a  man  of  considerable  ability  and  a  lifelong  resident  of  Austria, 
which  had  been  the  home  of  unnumbered  generations  of  his  ances- 
try. His  wife,  who  bore  the  maiden  name  of  Magdalena  Vogel, 
also  died  in  Austria.  Of  their  nine  children  five  were  spared  to 
attain  maturity,  but  the  only  one  of  the  number  to  come  to  Amer- 
ica was  Eichard,  whose  birth  occurred  at  Voralberg  April  2,  1852, 
and  whose  early  days  were  passed  on  the  home  farm.  After  he 
had  completed  the  studies  of  the  common  schools  he  served  an 
apprenticeship  to  the  butcher's  trade  in  his  native  land,  whence 
in  1872  he  came  to  the  United  States.  His  first  experiences  in 
the  new  world  were  gained  at  New  York  City,  Newark,  N.  J., 
and  Philadelphia,  and  from  the  latter  city  in  1875  he  came  to  San 
Francisco,  where  he  found  employment  at  his  trade. 

The  year  1878  found  the  young  Austrian  a  newcomer  in 
Woodland,  where  he  spent  one  month  in  the  employ  of  the  Moss- 
mayer  meat  market  and  eighteen  months  with  Frasier  &  Gary, 
also  butchers.  Finally  he  resigned  in  order  to  form  a  partnership 
with  George  Armstrong  under  the  firm  title  of  Armstrong  & 
Alge,  and  the  two  started  a  new  shop  on  Main,  between  First  and 
Second  streets.  For  a  period  of  about  thirty  years  the  partner- 
ship was  continued  pleasantly  and  profitably,  but  eventually  the 
senior  member  of  the  firm  disposed  of  his  interest  to  Mr.  Alge 
and  retired  to  private  life.  Eighteen  months  later,  in  1910,  Mr. 
Alge  leased  the  shop  to  other  parties  and  since  then  has  devoted 
himself  to  the  shipment  of  stock  to  the  metropolitan  packing 
houses  and  stockyards,  also  to  the  supervision  of  his  business  and 
residence  properties  in  Woodland,  and  to  the  management  of  his 
alfalfa  ranch  of  seventv  acres  about  one  and  one-half  miles  north 


&     /4^^^^^it^>L 


El 


.MRS.    II.    11AM1LTOX 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  257 

of  the  city.  Besides  other  important  interests,  he  serves  as  a 
director  in  the  First  National  Bank  of  Woodland,  in  which  for 
years  he  has  been  a  stockholder. 

After  coming  to  the  west  Mr.  Alge  formed  the  acquaintance 
of  Miss  Louisa  Graff,  and  they  were  married  in  Sacramento,  her 
native  city.  For  years  they,  with  their  only  child,  Bertha,  have 
been  leading  members  of  the  Holy  Rosary  Catholic  Church  and 
have  contributed  to  its  maintenance  with  the  utmost  generosity, 
while  in  addition  Mr.  Alge  has  been  a  helper  of  various  move- 
ments for  the  general  welfare  and  an  interested  participant  in 
public  affairs.  In  political  views  he  has  voted  with  the  Demo- 
cratic party  ever  since  he  became  a  naturalized  citizen  of  our 
country,  and  his  party  has  depended  upon  him  for  the  support  of 
its  measures  and  nominees.  His  fraternal  relationships  include 
enrollment  with  the  Herman  Sons,  the  Knights  of  Pythias  and 
the  Independent  Order  of  Foresters.  In  1882  he  became  a  charter 
member  of  Company  F,  Third  Regulars,  N.  O.  C,  and  served  for 
three  years.  He  also  served  for  five  years  as  a  member  of  the 
Woodland  volunteer  fire  department.  It  has  been  his  privilege 
to  witness  much  of  the  growth  of  Woodland.  When  lie  came 
here  it  was  a  hamlet  of  insignificant  proportions,  but  gradually  it 
has  expanded  in  area  and  commercial  importance  and  has  taken 
upon  itself  metropolitan  improvements  of  the  greatest  value  to 
property  owners  and  business  men.  With  this  slow  but  sure 
development  it  has  risen  to  a  foremost  rank  among  the  cities  of 
this  class  in  the  state  and  its  substantial  commercial  prestige 
mav  well  be  the  basis  of  future  advancement. 


DAVID    HAMILTON 

It  was  sixty-three  years  ago,  on  the  3rd  of  April,  1849,  that 
twenty-nine  men  started  from  McDonough  county.  111.,  enroute 
to  California.  Of  that  party  probably  only  two  are  now  living, 
David  Harris,  now  of  San  Francisco,  and  David  Hamilton,  the 
subject  of  this  sketch.  He  was  born  December  25,  1825,  at  Rush- 
ville,  Muskingum  county,  Ohio,  the  son  of  Alexander  and  Han- 
nah (Gabriel)  Hamilton,  the  former  of  Pennsylvania  and  the 
latter  of  Ohio.  The  father  died  in  1828  and  the' mother  in  1840. 
Alexander  and  David  were  their  only  children.  When  he  was  quite 
young  David  went  to  Miami  comity,  Ohio,  where  he  learned  the 
trade  of  blacksmith,     in  1848  he  located  in  Macomb,  111.,  where  he 


258  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

remained  about  a  year,  thence  coming  to  California,  as  above 
mentioned.  The  trip  was  made  overland  with  ox  teams  and  re- 
quired six  months  and  was  attended  by  many  disagreeable  features, 
which,  however,  were  speedily  forgotten  by  the  travellers  upon 
reaching  their  destination.  From  Shingle  Springs,  Cal.,  where  the 
little  company  separated,  Mr.  Hamilton  went  to  Coloma,  where  he 
mined  a  short  time.  In  October  he  purchased  an  ample  stock  of 
living  necessities  and  made  his  way  to  Amador  county,  Cal.,  where 
he  spent  the  winter  mining.  The  following  March  he  again  changed 
his  residence  to  Calaveras  county,  and  after  two  months  took  the 
trail  for  Sacramento,  where  he  conducted  a  combination  feed 
store  and  blacksmith  shop.  In  October,  1850,  he  moved  to  Yolo 
county  and  took  up  his  abode  on  a  ranch  three  miles  south  of 
Knights  Landing,  and  today  he  is  one  of  the  oldest  living  settlers  in 
this  county.  Stock-raising  was  his  next  venture,  but  after  two  years 
he  left  his  farm  to  engage  in  hauling  freight  from  Colusa  to  the 
mines  of  Shasta.  In  the  fall  he  returned  to  his  ranch  and  con- 
tinued operations  there  until  the  year  1857,  when  he  again  took  up 
teaming  between  Davisville  and  Sacramento.  One  of  the  notable 
events  of  that  summer  was  the  hauling  by  Mr.  Hamilton  of  a 
large  threshing  machine  from  Yolo  county  to  Carson  valley, 
New,  ten  mules  being  used,  six  for  hauling  the  machine,  and  four 
for  hauling  the  hops  and  feed.  The  trip  was  a  success  in  spite 
of  the  hills  and  bad  roads.  This  was  the  first  threshing  machine 
hauled  into  Nevada  and  Mr.  Hamilton  did  the  first  threshing  there 
that  fall,  pay  at  that  time  being  every  tenth  bushel.  Soon  after 
this  he  sold  his  outfit  and  returned  to  his  ranch.  The  winter  of 
1858-59  he  spent  at  the  Fraser  river  mines,  this  proving  another 
wild-goose  chase  attended  with  much  danger,  three  men  of  the 
party  being  killed  in  Indian  fights.  Mr.  Hamilton  returned  to  his 
farm  in  the  spring  of  1860. 

Mr.  Hamilton's  marriage  occurred  June  15,  1861,  to  Phoebe  P. 
Browned,  who  with  her  brother,  W.  W.  Browned,  came  to  Cali- 
fornia from  their  native  town,  New  Bedford,  Mass.,  in  1857,  via 
Panama.  In  1862  Mr.  Hamilton  purchased  a  quarter  section  of  land 
one  and  one-half  miles  west  of  Knights  Landing,  and  for  some 
years  engaged  in  stock-raising  and  farming  with  great  success, 
frequently  adding  to  his  land  holdings,  until  he  became  the  owner 
of  four  hundred  acres  of  excellent  land  which  he  sold  to  great 
advantage  in  1892.  Woodland  was  the  home  of  Mr.  Hamilton  for 
the  next  three  years,  when  he  bought  a  ten-acre  tract  one-third 
of  a  mile  west  of  the  city  limits,  where  he  has  a  large  residence  with 
the  necessary  improvements.  The  only  child  born  to  Mr.  and  Mrs. 
Hamilton,  Eugenia  Forest,  passed  away  when  seventeen  and  one- 
half  years  of  age,  leaving  bereft  not  only  her  parents,  but  her  many 
friends  as  well.     Her  education  had  been  carefully  conducted,  pri- 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  259 

marily  at  Knights  Lauding,  and  later  at  Mrs.  Perry's  Seminary  in 
Sacramento.  In  December,  1909,  Mrs.  Hamilton  followed  her 
daughter  "over  the  bar,"  leaving  the  husband  and  father  to  wait 
and  hope  for  the  reunion  which  will  one  day  be  theirs. 

Mr.  Hamilton  adheres  to  Republican  principles  and  first  voted 
for  president  in  1852.  Broad-minded  and  sympathetic,  he  has 
always  enjoyed  many  friends  who  attribute  his  success  to  his 
generous  heart  and  his  conscientious  devotion  to  dutv. 


WILLIAM  KING 

Beneath  the  shadow  of  the  Great  Smoky  mountains,  with 
the  lofty  peaks  of  the  Blue  Ridge  chain  lying  in  the  remote 
distance  and  lifting  their  gray  summits  toward  the  sky,  in  the 
eastern  portion  of  Tennessee  seventy-five  years  ago  there  stood 
a  few  buildings  on  a  Knox  county  plantation,  forming  a  home- 
stead whose  memory  lingers  with  William  King  into  his  old 
age.  There  he  was  born  in  1838  and  there  he  played  with  the 
zest  of  care-free  childhood.  But  when  he  was  yet  quite  small 
the  family,  in  the  hope  of  bettering  their  condition,  removed  by 
wagon  to  Missouri  and  journeyed  west  almost  to  the  Kansas 
line,  settling  in  Jackson  county  south  of  the  present  metropolis 
of  Kansas  City.  Into  that  region  settlers  were  coming  in  large 
numbers,  but  the  news  of  the  discovery  of  gold  in  California 
turned  the  tide  of  emigration  still  further  toward  the  setting 
sun. 

With  the  passing  of  winter  and  the  opening  of  the  spring 
of  1853  an  expedition  was  formed  for  the  purpose  of  crossing 
the  plains.  In  the  party  there  were  thirty-two  men  and  only 
two  boys,  David  and  William  King,  brothers,  the  latter  a  youth 
of  fifteen  years,  sturdily  endowed  by  nature,  but  with  only  the 
education  afforded  by  the  day  and  locality.  He  was  quite  useful 
as  a  cattle  drover  and  also  looked  after  the  mules  for  the  men. 
At  the  end  of  a  tedious  journey  Yolo  county  was  reached  during 
the  autumn  of  1853  and  here  Mr.  King  still  resides.  At  present 
there  is  not  a  man  nor  a  woman  in  Davis  township  who  was 
here  when  he  came  in  1853  and  many  are  the  changes  he  lias 
witnessed  during  the  long  period  of  his  residence,  his  own 
quiet  and  industrious  labors  having  contributed  to  the  bringing 
about  of  some  of  these  changes. 

After  having  made  two   trips   across   the   mountains    hauling 


260  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

freight  with  four  yoke  of  oxen,  Mr.  King  began  to  work  on  the 
Gregory  ranch,  where  he  was  the  only  employe  able  to  speak 
English.  Two-thirds  of  the  people  in  the  vicinity  of  Davis  at 
the  time  were  Spaniards.  In  1856  he  rented  sixty  acres  of 
raw  land  and  raised  a  crop  of  wheat,  which  he  sold  at  $2.50 
per  cwt.  Next  he  squatted  on  a  land  grant,  but  was  ejected  be- 
cause he  had  not  attained  his  majority.  However,  he  managed  to 
raise  a  crop  of  broom  corn  on  the  place.  During  1861  he  began 
to  haul  freight  from  Sacramento  to  Virginia  City  and  continued 
at  the  work  for  a  considerable  period,  eventually,  however,  re- 
moving to  Yolo  county,  where  he  bought  eighty-five  acres  of 
unimproved  land.  His  first  task  was  the  clearing  away  of  the 
brush  that  covered  the  land  and  he  then  was  able  to  raise  large 
crops  of  barley  and  wheat.  In  1875  he  moved  into  the  village 
of  Davis,  where  ever  since  he  has  made  his  home,  but  the 
farm  of  eighty-five  acres,  purchased  in  1869,  he  still  owns  and 
manages.  All  of  the  trees  on  his  home  place  in  Davis  were 
planted  by  Mrs.  King.  Many  other  improvements  were  made 
that  enhanced  the  value  of  the  property.  During  1910  the 
grain  threshed  on  the  farm  averaged  twenty-three  sacks  to  the 
acre.     A  large  crop  of  hay  also  was  taken  from  the  farm. 

Since  becoming  a  citizen  of  Davis  and  a  man  of  some  leisure, 
Mr.  King  has  devoted  a  part  of  his  time  to  public  activities. 
Movements  for  the  benefit  of  the  town  or  township  receive  his 
sympathetic  co-operation  and  he  has  been  progressive  in  his  citi- 
zenship from  the  first  of  his  identification  with  the  county.  In 
no  movement  has  he  been  more  interested  than  in  the  improve- 
ment of  the  highways  and  he  has  rendered  efficient  service  as 
roadmaster.  As  early  as  1879  he  was  first  chosen  to  the  office 
of  justice  of  the  peace  and  for  nine  years  he  continued  to  serve 
with  impartiality  and  intelligence  in  the  position.  During  1890 
he  was  elected  a  member  of  the  board  of  county  supervisors  and 
later  was  honored  with  the  chairmanship  of  that  body.  During 
this  time  he  built  the  first  two  steel  bridges  in  his  district,  the 
first  in  the  county,  and  he  justly  takes  pride  in  having 
reduced  the  taxes  to  $1.  No  one  surpasses  him  in  devo- 
tion to  the  county,  of  which  for  so  many  years  he  has  been  a 
progressive  citizen.  Sharing  with  him  in  the  regard  of  others  is 
liis  wife,  formerly  Miss  Rebecca  M.  Montgomery,  whom  he  mar- 
ried March  30,  1864,  and  who  was  born  in  Marion  county,  Mo. 
She  crossed  the  plains  with  her  parents  in  1854.  Her  father, 
Alexander,  and  her  grandfather,  William  Montgomery,  first  came 
to  Yolo  county  in  1850.  Mr.  and  Mrs.  King  became  the  parents 
to  eight  children,  but.  two,  J.  K.  and  Daisy,  have  passed  from 
earth.     The  others  are  as  follows:  Catherine,  Mrs.  W.  H.   Scott, 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  261 

of  Davis;  Amanda,  wife  of  J.  B.  Harrington,  of  Davis;  Thomas 
J.;  Edna,  Mrs.  W.  Cole,  of  Sacramento;  Nellie,  wife  of  Samuel 
Lillard,  of  Davis;  and  Belle,  who  married  I.  C.  May  and  lives 
in  Sacramento. 


T.  G.  ROGERS 

As  the  efficient  engineer  of  the  Winters  Canning  Company 
Mr.  Rogers  has  served  for  the  past  six  years,  and  by  his  manli- 
ness and  progressive  spirit  has  won  many  stanch  friends  in  that 
locality. 

Mr.  Rogers  was  born  April  13,  1848,  in  Tazewell  county,  Va., 
where  he  spent  his  youth,  receiving  his  education  in  the  schools 
of  that  section,  and  during  his  leisure  hours  assisted  upon  the 
farm  of  his  parents,  Gilbert  and  Lena  (Doak)  Rogers,  of  Vir- 
ginia, both  of  English  parentage.  At  the  age  of  eighteen  he  went 
to  Harrison  county,  Mo.,  where  he  attended  school,  and  two  years 
later  removed  to  Council  Bluffs,  Iowa,  where  he  became  night 
watchman  for  the  Ogden  hotel.  In  April,  1868,  he  went  to  Omaha, 
Nebr.,  to  accept  a  position  in  the  shops  of  the  Union  Pacific 
Railroad  ComjDany,  and  subsequently  was  transferred  to  the  road 
as  engineer,  running  the  freight  which  hauled  the  rock  for  the 
piers  of  the  iron  suspension  bridge  built  over  the  Missouri  river 
at  Omaha  in  1869.  In  1871  he  resigned  his  duties  and  came  to 
California,  where  for  twenty-three  years  he  was  in  the  employ 
of  MeCune  &  Garnett,  farmers,  of  Dixon,  Solano  county.  Since 
settling  in  Winters  in  1897  he  has  followed  the  trade  of  machinist 
and  stationary  engineer.  For  eleven  months  he  acted  as  mail 
carrier  for  the  federal  forces  during  the  Civil  war,  his  experience 
having  been  so  fraught  with  danger  and  horror  that  never  again 
would  he  consent  to  undergo  a  similar  ordeal. 

Mr.  Rogers  was  united  in  marriage  in  May,  1896,  with  Miss 
Louise  King,  of  Tazewell  county,  Va.,  and  to  their  union  five 
children  were  born:  James  II.,  who  graduated  from  the  Winters 
high  school;  Jessie  L.,  a  graduate  of  the  San  Jose  Normal;  Jose- 
phine, who  is  a  high  school  senior;  John,  and  Alma. 

Mr.  Rogers  is  a  member  of  Silveyville  Lodge  No.  201,  F.  & 
A.  M.,  at  Dixon,  and  as  a  prominent  Democrat  maintains  an  active 
interest  in  political  developments.  A  citizen  of  practical  worth, 
he  is  always  prompt  to  lend  all  the  aid  in  his  power  to  public 
enterprises  of  merit,  and  is  highly  esteemed  throughout  the  com- 
munitv. 


262  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

WILLIAM   0.   RUSSELL 

As  supervisor  of  his  district  for  a  number  of  terms,  "William 
0.  Russell  lias  utilized  the  office  as  offering  an  opportunity  to 
promote  needed  improvements  in  his  section  of  the  county,  and 
he  is  intensely  interested  in  bringing  his  county  up  to  the  stan- 
dard of  any  in  California  today.  The  son  of  the  well-known  and 
estimable  citizen,  Francis  E.  Russell,  he  inherited  many  of  his 
excellent  characteristics,  which  have  been  the  means  of  bringing 
him  the  recognition  he  merits. 

On  the  old  ranch,  where  he  still  lives,  William  0.  Russell  was 
born  June  1,  1867,  and  to  the  management  of  this  old  homestead 
he  returned,  after  having  completed  his  education  in  the  Univer- 
sity of  the  Pacific  at  San  Jose.  The  work  which  was  begun  by  his 
father  has  been  carried  forward  under  his  intelligent  oversight, 
and  now  he  has  the  gratification  of  knowing  that  the  ranch  is  the 
equal  of  any  property  in  the  locality.  The  original  property, 
owned  by  himself  and  his  mother,  has  been  enlarged  and  now 
comprises  eight  hundred  acres,  including  the  homestead  and 
some  adjacent  land,  much  of  which  is  in  pasture  or  under  cultiva- 
tion to  grain.  Thirty-five  sacks  of  barley  have  been  harvested 
as  the  average  per  acre.  Seventy-five  acres  are  in  alfalfa  and 
under  irrigation,  of  which  five  or  six  crops  are  cut  annually.  A 
fine  dairy  of  forty  Holstein  cows  adds  to  the  revenue  secured 
from  the  ranch. 

During  1906  Mr.  Russell  brought  to  the  old  homestead  his 
bride,  who  was  Miss  Eleanor  A.  Carlson,  a  native  of  Kansas 
City,  Mo.  They  are  the  parents  of  a  son  who  bears  his  father's 
name.  Fraternally  Mr.  Russell  holds  membership  with  Athens 
Lodge  No.  228,  F.  &  A.  M.,  at  Davis,  and  his  Masonic  relations 
are  enlarged  through  his  association  with  Dixon  Chapter  No.  48, 
R.  A.  M.,  Woodland  Commandery  No.  21  and  Islam  Temple,  Nobles 
of  the  Mystic  Shrine,  of  San  Francisco.  The  Native  Sons  of  the 
Golden  West  have  his  name  enrolled  upon  their  list  of  active 
members.  From  early  life  he  has  been  an  advocate  of  good  roads 
and  the  highways  of  his  district  have  had  the  benefit  of  his  intel- 
ligent demand  for  improvement. 

In  1898  Mr.  Russell  was  elected  supervisor  and  enjoyed  the 
distinction  of  being  the  first  candidate  on  the  Republican  ticket 
ever  elected  to  that  office  from  the  second  district  of  Yolo  county, 
serving  until  the  close  of  his  term  in  January,  1903.  He  served 
two  years  as  member  of  the  finance  committee,  and  a  like  period 
as  chairman  of  the  board.  Again,  in  1910,  he  was  chosen  to  serve 
as  supervisor,  and  at  this  writing  he  continues  in  the  position, 
never  losing  an  opportunity  to  attend  the  conventions  of  super- 


Ofr@Jfe^jM^ 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  -267> 

visors  of  the  state,  in  order  to  further  his  ideas  for  the  improve- 
ments of  his  section.  Other  industrial  and  commercial  gatherings 
for  the  discussion  of  public  welfare  and  needed  legislation  attract 
him  and  usually  find  him  one  of  them,  and  by  so  doing  he  feels 
he  can  most  conscientiously  and  ably  serve  his  constituents,  who 
have  every  reason  to  be  proud  of  their  choice. 


ELIJAH  AUGUSTUS  COOK 

Numbered  among  the  most  substantial  and  progressive  citi- 
zens of  Winters  is  Mr.  Cook,  who  has  been  an  orchardist  in  Yolo 
county  for  the  past  thirty-two  years.  A  native  of  Illinois,  Mr. 
Cook's  birth  occurred  October  17,  1852,  in  Greene  county,  where 
his  parents,  Morris  and  Mary  (Gleason)  Cook,  natives  of  Ireland, 
settled  in  an  early  day.  In  1859  the  family  removed  to  Grundy 
county,  Mo.,  locating  on  the  Grand  river,  near  Spickard,  in 
which  section  our  subject,  received  his  education,  later  assisting 
his  father  on  the  farm.  At  the  age  of  twenty-two  he  went  to 
near  Grinned,  Poweshiek  county,  Iowa,  where  he  farmed  for 
two  years,  going  thence  to  Austin,  Minn.,  in  which  locality  he 
conducted  a  farm  until  1877,  when  he  came  to  Yolo  county,  Cal. 
Soon  after  this,  however,  he  removed  to  Jackson  county,  Ore., 
where  for  three  years,  he  operated  a  mining  and  milling  busi- 
ness. In  1880,  he  returned  to  Yolo  county,  where  he  purchased 
twenty-seven  and  one-half  acres,  later  adding  fifty-eight  acres 
to  his  holdings,  and  at  present  is  the  owner  of  ninety-six  acres 
of  land  two  miles  west  of  Winters.  Fifty  acres  of  his  property 
is  devoted  to  orchard,  producing  in  1911  six  tons  of  dried  fruit 
and  one  and  one-half  tons  of  dried  prunes. 

Mr.  Cook  was  united  in  marriage  in  Sacramento,  June  6, 
1894,  with  Miss  Elizabeth  Eyerly,  a  native  of  Springfield,  Ohio, 
and  to  their  union  three  children  were  born,  namely:  Morris  Iv, 
a  senior  in  the  Winters  high  school;  Helen,  Elizabeth  II.,  and 
Samuel  K. 

Mr.  Cook  is  an  active  member  of  Damocles  Lodge  No.  33, 
K.  of  P.,  and  as  a  stanch  Democrat  and  public  spirited  citizen 
maintains  a  keen  interest  in  all  public  movements.  He  has  con- 
tributed materially  to  the  progress  of  the  community,  and  among 
his  associates  is  regarded  as  a  man  of  high  honor  and  kindly  per- 
sonality. 


266  HISTORY  OF   YOLO  COUNTY 

CHRIS  SCHLOTZ 

Iu  a  comfortable  residence  on  West  Main  street,  two  miles 
from  the  city  of  Woodland,  lives  Chris  Schlotz,  who  was  born  in 
Oberamt  Schorndorf,  Wurtemberg,  Germany  March  13,  1874.  His 
father,  David  Schlotz,  a  farmer  in  Wurtemberg,  is  still  living  in 
his  native  land.  The  latter  married  Christine  Birk,  who  died  in 
1907,  after  having  borne  him  ten  children,  of  whom  seven  are 
living  and  of  whom  Chris,  fourth  in  order  of  nativity,  is  the  only 
one  in  California. 

In  the  public  schools  of  his  native  land  Chris  Schlotz  was 
educated  and  in  farming  he  was  •  instructed  by  his  father  until 
he  was  nineteen  years  old.  At  that  time  he  had  become  deeply 
interested  in  California,  no  less  through  reading  than  through  the 
representations  of  men  and  women  of  his  neighborhood  who  had 
returned  from  the  American  Golden  West,  enthusiastic  as  to  its 
beauties  and  its  possibilities,  and  he  resolved  to  visit  the  land  of 
his  dreams  and  of  his  aspirations;  so  in  1893,  the  year  in  which 
he  was  nineteen  years  old,  he  came  to  California  and  immediately 
located  in  Yolo  county.  During  the  first  five  years  of  his  stay 
here  he  was  employed  on  the  ranch  of  George  Woodward.  Then 
he  ranched  until  1903,  rounding  out  the  first  ten  years  of  his 
career  in  America,  and  from  1903  until  1911  he  was  in  the  liquor 
trade  on  Main  street,  Woodland.  In  1912  he  bought  his  present 
ranch  of  thirty  acres  two  miles  from  Woodland,  which  he  devotes 
to  the  growing  of  alfalfa.  Being  under  irrigation,  it  yields  about 
five  cuttings  a  year.  The  place  is  well  improved  with  a  good  house 
and  ample  barns  and  other  outbuildings.  A  thorough  California 
farmer,  Mr.  Schlotz,  operating  along  lines  strictly  up-to-date,  is 
making  a  success  of  which  many  another  farmer  in  his  vicinity 
might  well  be  proud. 

August  3,  1905,  Mr.  Schlotz  married,  at  Woodland,  Miss 
Emma  Rath,  who  was  born  in  Hungry  Hollow,  Yolo  county,  a 
daughter  of  George  and  Sarah  (Mast)  Rath,  successful  farmers, 
who  lived  out  their  days  in  that  neighborhood.  Mr.  and  Mrs. 
Schlotz  are  members  of  the  German  Evangelical  Lutheran  Church, 
with  which  her  parents  also  were  identified.  Fraternally  he  affili- 
ates with  the  Herman  Sons  and  with  the  Eagles.  His  political 
alliances  are  Democratic,  and  there  is  no  question  of  public  econ- 
omy in  which  he  is  not  deeply  interested.  Thoroughly  American- 
ized, firmly  believing  in  the  great  destiny  of  the  people  with  whom 
he  has  cast  his  lot,  he  is  as  patriotic  as  any  native  son  of  the  soil 
could  possibly  be,  and  there  is  no  movement  for  the  benefit  of  the 
community  that  he  does  not  aid  to  the  extent  of  his  ability. 


M.  H.   STITT 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  269 

MATT   H.   STITT 

The  chairman  of  the  hoard  of  supervisors  of  Yolo  county 
is  a  representative  of  an  honored  old  Kentucky  family  that  since 
1888  has  been  identified  with  the  material  upbuilding  of  Cali- 
fornia. Since  having'  been  established  in  the  new  world,  the  family 
has  displayed  a  depth  of  loyalty  to  country  and  a  degree  of 
patriotism  that  proves  beyond  question  their  true  American  spirit 
and  by  no  one  of  the  name  was  this  loyal  devotion  more  evi- 
denced than  by  Hon.  William  J.  Stitt,  a  Kentuckian  of  the  old 
school,  brave  in  battle,  honorable  in  business  and  enterprising  in 
temperament,  whose  love  for  country  was  so  great  that  it  impelled 
him  to  serve  throughout  the  entire  period  of  the  Mexican  war, 
and  whose  devotion  to  the  south  was  so  sincere  that  it  led  Mm 
into  the  Confederate  cause,  as  a  major  in  the  command  of  the 
famous  leader,  Gen.  John  C.  Breekenridge.  When  the  cause  was 
lost  he  again  took  up  the  pursuits  of  peace,  and  out  of  the  wreck 
of  the  ruined  hopes  of  the  Confederacy  endeavored  to  build  anew 
a  permanent  place  in  his  own  home  state.  As  proprietor  of  Hotel 
Flemingsburg,  in  Fleming  county,  and  the  Versailles  house,  in 
Woodford  county,  he  found  work  peculiarly  fitted  to  one  of  his 
temperament,  for  his  genial  disposition  and  friendly  manner  won 
for  him  many  friends,  and  as  "mine  host"  of  the  two  southern 
hotels  he  became  very  popular  with  the  traveling  public.  His 
intelligence  of  mind  and  energy  of  spirit  were  appreciated  by  the 
people  among  whom  he  lived  and  they  called  him  to  serve  in 
positions  of  trust.  For  one  term  he  served  as  sheriff  of  his 
native  county  of  Nicholas.  The  position  was  one  for  which  he 
was  well  qualified  by  his  absolute  fearlessness  of  temperament. 
In  the  administration  of  the  law  he  knew  neither  fear  nor  par- 
tiality. For  two  terms  he  represented  the  people  of  his  district 
in  the  Kentucky  state  legislature,  and  in  that  responsible  capacity 
he  proved  not  only  efficient,  but  even  brilliant,  upholding  the  inter- 
ests of  the  locality  which  he  represented  and  at  the  same  time 
laboring  willingly  for  all  measures  calculated  to  benefit  the  com- 
monwealth. 

During  young  manhood  Major  .Stitt  had  established  domestic 
ties,  being  united  in  marriage  with  Miss  Mary  Bradley,  a  native  of 
Cynthiana,  Ky.,  and  their  son,  Matt  II.,  was  born  at  Versailles. 
that  state,  August  14,  1873.  The  family  removed  to  California  in 
L888  and  settled  upon  a  ranch  near  Yacaville,  where  the  Major  died 
in  1907,  and  where  his  widow  is  still  making  her  home.  Of  their 
nine  children  the  sixth  was  Matt  H.,  who  accompanied  the  family 
to  California  at  the  age  of  fifteen  years  and  later  studied  at 
Yacaville    College    for    a    time.      When    eighteen    years    of    age    he 


270  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

began  to  work  at  $1.25  per  day.  The  beginning  was  small,  but 
he  had  a  robust  constitution  and  a  willing  spirit,  and  it  was  not 
in  his  make-up  to  despise  the  day  of  small  things.  Little  by  little 
he  advanced  and  the  humble  beginning  was  merged  into  substantial 
activities,  dating  from  his  removal  in  1891  to  Yolo  county,  and 
his  identification  with  the  ranching  interests  in  the  vicinity  of 
Guinda.  During  1895  he  bought  land  near  this  same  village 
and  that  was  the  basis  of  subsequent  success.  Making  a  specialty 
of  horticulture  and  experimenting  with  deciduous  fruits  of  various 
kinds,  he  proved  the  kinds  best  suited  to  the  soil  and  climate. 
In  this  way  he  secured  an  orchard  of  especial  value.  At  this  writ- 
ing he  owns  about  two  hundred  acres  in  his  home  place,  besides  hav- 
ing an  interest  in  five  hundred  acres  of  ranch  lands  and  orchards. 
When  it  is  considered  that  he  came  to  Yolo  county  at  the  age  of 
eighteen  and  earned  his  livelihood  by  poorly  paid  manual  toil,  his 
present  standing,  ere  he  has  reached  life's  prime,  may  well  be  a 
source  of  gratification  to  him. 

As  he  has  advanced  little  by  little  into  independence,  Mr. 
Stitt  has  attracted  the  attention  of  acquaintances  by  his  sterling 
qualities  of  head  and  heart.  Easily  discerned  by  them  is  the 
fact  that  he  is  making  his  own  success  by  dint  of  indomitable  per- 
severance. Believing  that  the  qualities  that  are  bringing  him 
success  in  private  affairs  would  make  him  a  helpful  factor  in  the 
county's  well-being,  his  fellow-citizens  selected  him  to  serve  as 
supervisor.  Prom  the  time  of  attaining  his  majority  he  has 
voted  the  Democratic  ticket  and  it  was  the  Democrats  who  chose 
him  for  the  office,  the  election  being  necessary  on  account  of  the 
resignation  of  the  late  incumbent,  J.  W.  Monroe.  His  election  by 
a  large  majority  in  a  Republican  district  furnishes  abundant  proof 
concerning  his  personal  popularity  as  well  as  concerning  the  con- 
fidence reposed  in  him  by  the  people  of  the  fifth  district.  At  the 
expiration  of  his  term  in  1912  he  was  nominated  for  his  own  suc- 
cessor, without  any  opposition  whatever,  and  received  a  flattering 
vote,  not  only  from  his  own  party,  but  also  from  the  Republicans 
and  the  Socialists.  In  January  of  1912  he  was  chosen  chairman  of 
the  board,  and  in  that  responsible  post  he  displays  a  keen  knowl- 
edge concerning  the  needs  of  the  county  along  every  line  of  prog- 
ress and  an  enthusiastic  desire  to  promote  the  building  of  good 
roads,  the  maintenance  of  substantial  bridges  and  the  support  of 
county  institutions,  while  at  the  same  time  he  also  guards  the 
interests  of  the  taxpayers  so  that  they  may  feel  no  undue  strain 
in  their  taxes.  For  a  long  period,  after  coming  to  Yolo  county, 
he  remained  unmarried,  but  in  1895,  at  the  age  of  twenty-two,  he 
was  united  with  Miss  Julia  A.  Hamilton,  who  was  born  near 
Madison,   Cab,  but  at  the  time   of  the  marriage  made   her  home 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  271 

in  Guinda,  her  father,  James  W.  Hamilton,  having  been  for  years 
a  prominent  man  in  this  section  and  an  honored  pioneer  of  the 
county.  Three  children,  Josephine,  M.  H.,  Jr.,  and  William  J., 
comprise  the  family  of  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Stitt,  and  it  is  the  hope  and 
expectation  of  the  parents  to  give  to  them  the  best  educational 
advantages  the   schools   of  Yolo   county  afford. 


CHARLES    E.    GREENE 

Among  the  leading  citizens  of  Yolo  county  is  Charles  E. 
Greene,  the  owner  of  El  Nido  ranch,  comprising  two  hundred 
acres  eight  miles  southwest  of  Woodland,  which  ranks  among 
the  finest  and  most  highly  developed  ranches  in  that  section. 
Representing  the  type  of  man  well  fitted  for  the  labor  of  build- 
ing up  a  community,  Mr.  Greene's  executive  ability  and  tenacity 
of  purpose,  united  with  unquestioned  honor  and  good  judgment, 
have  enabled  him  to  control  with  ease  the  many  problems  which 
are  inevitable  in  his  work. 

Mr.  Greene  was  born  July  9,  1865,  in  the  old  Greene  home 
adjoining  the  present  place,  where  his  father,  whose  life  appears 
elsewhere  in  this  volume,  located  in  1852.  Upon  completion  of  his 
public  school  education  the  son  entered  the  California  Military 
Academy,  at  Oakland,  where  he  continued  his  studies  for  three 
years  and  later  took  a  course  in  the  Atkinson  Business  College  at 
Sacramento,  where  he  graduated  in  1885.  He  then  assisted  his 
father  in  the  management  of  their  ranch  consisting  of  twelve 
hundred  and  eighty  acres  devoted  to  grain  raising.  In  1902.  in 
connection  with  the  home  place,  he  rented  the  Hext  place,  com- 
prising nine  hundred  and  sixty  acres  adjoining  the  old  home, 
and  after  giving  up  the  Hext  ranch  he  rented  the  Marders  grain 
ranch  of  nine  hundred  acres  located  near  Esparto.  After  four 
years  he  relinquished  his  control  of  this  property  in  order  to  take 
charge  of  the  two  hundred-acre  tract  allotted  to  him  upon  the 
division  of  his  father's  estate,  since  which  period  he  has  devoted 
his  efforts  to  the  improvement  of  his  inheritance.  In  addition  to 
raising  barley,  which  runs  fifteen  to  twenty-five  sacks  per  acre, 
he  conducts  an  almond  orchard  of  fourteen  acres  which  produces 
from  one-half  to  three-quarters  of  a  ton  per  acre  annually.  His 
comfortable  bungalow  erected  in  1906  is  surrounded  by  trees, 
vines  and  shrubbery,  artistically  arranged,  and  his  entire  ranch 
is  suggestive  of  the  progressive  thought  and  untiring  industry 
of  its  owner. 


272  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

July  30,  1902,  Mr.  Greene  was  married  at  Sacramento  to 
Miss  Cornelia  Purrington,  whose  birth  occurred  in  Sutter  county 
and  whose  parents,  Henry  and  Anna  (Parker)  Purrington,  were 
natives  of  Maine  and  California  respectively.  Two  daughters, 
Lucile  and  Dorothy,  have  been  born  to  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Greene. 
Since  1896  Mr.  Greene  has  been  an  active  member  of  Athens 
Lodge  No.  228,  F.  &  A.  M.,  at  Davis,  being  affiliated  also  with 
Woodland  Chapter  No.  46,  R.  A.  M.,  and  Woodland  Commandery 
No.  21,  and  by  virtue  of  his  wife's  identification  with  Ionia  Chap- 
ter No.  199,  0.  E.  S.,  at  Davis,  is  likewise  enabled  to  enjoy  the 
privileges  of  that  order.  In  all  enterprises  pertaining  to  the 
public  good,  Mr.  Greene  is  prompt  to  lend  his  hearty  support,  and 
is  conceded  to  be  one  of  the  most  able  citizens  of  the  section  in 
which  he  is  so  well  and  favorably  known. 


WILLIAM  DAHLER 

The  strong,  sterling  qualities  that  made  members  of  the 
Dahler  family  desirable  citizens  in  every  locality  in  which  its 
members  settled  lost  nothing  in  transmission  to  William  Dahler, 
a  well-known  resident  of  Woodland.  He  is  a  son  of  Elisha  and 
Mary  (Kins)  Dahler,  both  natives  of  Germany  and  early  settlers 
in  Merrimack,  Sauk  county,  Wis.  Settling  there  as  pioneers  they 
eleared  a  farm  in  the  oak  openings  and  it  was  there  that  the 
earth  life  of  the  father  came  to  a  close.  The  mother  came  to  the 
west  and  passed  her  last  days  in  Woodland.  Of  the  six  children 
horn  to  these  parents  William,  the  youngest,  was  born  in  Merri- 
mack, Wis.,  June  14,  1878.  He  gained  a  good  public  school  educa- 
tion in  that  state  and  came  to  Woodland  in  1895,  when  he  was 
about  seventeen  years  of  age.  For  about  four  years  he  was 
employed  in  a  grocery  store.  In  1902  he  was  employed  by  the 
Pacific  Telephone  and  Telegraph  Company  as  repair  man  and 
rose  to  he  wire  chief  of  the  Woodland  Exchange.  Associated  with 
Mr.  Roberts,  in  1909  he  established  the  Electric  Garage  Company, 
which  was  incorporated  in  1912  under  that  name  and  Mr.  Dahler 
was  made  president  and  manager.  Under  his  guidance  it  has  ad- 
vanced to  the  first  place  among  similar  institutions  in  the  county 
and  to  prominence  among  those  of  Northern  California.  The 
business  was  begun  on  Third  street,  where  its  quarters  proved 
too  restricted  for  its  growing  demands.  In  1911  it  was  removed 
to    its    present    quarters    at    Third    and    Main    streets,    where    it 


QjL^  (P^ 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  275 

occupies  a  building  with  a  floor  space  of  44x190  feet.  The  machine 
shop  is  one  of  the  most  complete  of  its  kind,  being  equipped  with 
all  modern  machinery  and  appliances,  and  the  garage  is  equipped 
for  charging  electric  machines  and  also  has  a  vulcanizing  de- 
partment. In  this  establishment  may  be  found  for  sale  a  complete 
line  of  standard  automobiles  and  motorcycles.  All  in  all  the  enter- 
prise is  both  large  and  comprehensive  and  not  the  least  that  may  he 
said  of  it  is  that  it  is  growing  both  steadily  and  rapidly. 

Mr.  Dahler's  marriage,  celebrated  in  Woodland,  united  him 
with  Miss  Rosa  Zecher,  a  native  of  Peoria,  111.  They  have  two 
children,  William  and  Dorothy.  Mr.  Dahler  is  a  member  of  the 
Foresters  of  America,  and  helpful  to  the  various  interests  of  the 
order.  Politically  he  is  a  Democrat.  In  all  matters  pertaining  to 
the  advancement  of  his  community  he  takes  a  deep  and  generous 
interest,  aiding  to  the  extent  of  his  ability,  financially  and  other- 
wise, any  measure  which  in  his  judgment  promises  practical  and 
permanent  benefit  to  any  considerable  class  of  his  fellow-citizens. 


RICHARD  P.  WALLACE 

The  present  auditor  of  Yolo  county,  Richard  P.  Wallace,  is 
the  descendant  of  a  long  line  of  southern  ancestors,  and  he  him- 
self was  a  native  of  the  south,  his  birth  having  occurred  in  McMinn- 
ville,  Tenm,  April  14,  1871.  He  is  the  son  of  James  F.  and  Ada 
(Bush)  Wallace,  who  were  born,  respectively,  in  Tennessee  and 
Mississippi.  The  father,  a  man  of  considerable  ability  and  promi- 
nent in  newspaper  circles,  came  from  the  south  in  1873  to  Cali- 
fornia, locating  in  Oakland,  and  thereafter  was  connected  with  the 
San  Francisco  Call.  The  mother,  who  is  a  woman  of  wide  learn- 
ing and  experience,  is  now  the  efficient  librarian  of  the  Woodland 
public  library,  an  institution  which  has  progressed  notably  under 
her  able  supervision. 

Richard  P.  Wallace  is  practically  a  native  Californian,  for 
he  has  been  a  resident  of  the  state  since  he  was  two  years  of  age. 
His  education  was  acquired  in  the  public  schools  of  Oakland,  and 
under  private  instruction  in  New  Mexico,  to  which  place  he  removed 
in  the  year  1881.     His  identification  with  Woodland  dates  from  the 

year  1885,  when  he  became  associated  with  a  prominent  dry  g Is 

firm  in  this  city,  and  for  the  following  ten  years  was  connected 
with  this  and  other  dry  goods  firms  in  the  city.  Eventually  he 
gave  up  this  business  to  enter  one  for  which  he  had  special  adap- 


276  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

tation,  as  his  record  in  the  newspaper  field  in  this  city  for  the 
nine  years  that  followed  abundantly  testified.  Resigning  his  posi- 
tion at  the  end  of  that  time  he  took  a  course  in  advertising  writing 
in  Powell's  correspondence  school  of  New  York,  and  after  gradu- 
ating be  continued  "ad"  writing  and  fire  insurance  for  two  years. 

As  a  candidate  on  the  Democratic  ticket  Mr.  Wallace  was  in 
1906  nominated  to  the  office  of  county  auditor  and  following  his 
election  he  assumed  the  duties  of  that  office  in  January,  1907.  So 
satisfactorily  had  he  served  the  interests  of  his  constituents  that 
in  1910  he  was  re-elected  for  a  second  term  without  opposition, 
being  the  nominee  of  all  parties,  than  which  there  could  be  no 
greater  testimony  given  as  to  bis  worth  to  bis  community  as  a 
citizen  and  public  servant. 

The  marriage  of  Mr.  Wallace,  July  2,  1901,  united  him  with 
Miss  Elsie  Bullivant,  a  native  of  Sacramento,  and  two  children 
have  been  born  to  them,  Mora  Elise  and  Clara  Adelaide.  Frater- 
nally Mr.  Wallace  is  well  known,  being  a  member  of  the  Masons, 
Odd  Fellows  and  Woodmen  of  the  World,  and  he  is  also  an  active 
member  of  the  Episcopal  Church. 


E.  D.  PRATT 

One  of  the  most  successful  and  highly  esteemed  ranchers  of 
Winters  is  E.  D.  Pratt,  who  since  1861  has  been  a  resident  of 
Yolo  county,  to  the  development  of  which  he  has  contributed  mater- 
ially. A  native  of  New  York,he  was  born  in  Erie  county  August 
4,  1835,  and  removed  in  1842  to  DuPage  county,  111.,  with  his  par- 
ents, Daniel  and  Lucretia  (Cook)  Pratt,  natives  of  New  York.  In 
1861  E.  D.  Pratt  left  the  farm  and  came  to  California  with  ox- 
teams,  crossing  the  Missouri  river  at  Omaha,  Neb.,  up  the  Platte 
to  Sublett's  cutoff,  thence  into  Humboldt  and  Honey  Lake  valley, 
in  which  section  he  noted'  numerous  natural  springs,  both  hot  and 
cold,  many  of  which  were  within  four  feet  of  each  other.  While 
camping  on  Green  river  his  party  was  besieged  by  Indians,  who 
drove  away  some  of  their  cattle.  Pressing  onward  toward  the 
desert,  which  they  crossed  in  thirty-six  hours,  they  struck  north- 
ward, shortly  thereafter  reaching  water,  much  to  the  relief  of  both 
themselves  and  their  weary  stock.  After  a  six  months'  journey  full 
of  dangers  and  hardships,  the  travelers  reached  Marysville,  Cal., 
the  latter  part  of  the  trip  having  been  made  in  company  with  a  train 
of  seventy  wagons. 


EISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  277 

Mr.  Pratt  remained  with  his  brother-in-law,  S.  M.  Enos,  being 
employed  in  the  old  tule  house  that  was  washed  away  in  the  flood 
of  1862.  This  was  rebuilt  and  Mr.  Pratt  continued  there  until  he 
and  Mr.  Enos  became  associated  in  the  stock  business  in  Yolo 
county.  About  1865  Mr.  Pratt  sold  his  interest  and  returned  to 
Illinois,  and  after  one  year  settled  in  Iowa.  In  Poweshiek  county, 
that  state,  he  engaged  in  farming  and  stock-raising  until  1876, 
when  he  returned  to  Yolo  county  and  ever  since  he  has  been  en- 
gaged in  stock-raising  and  horticulture.  Some  years  ago  he  pur- 
chased ten  acres  of  the  Wolfskill  tract  near  Winters,  setting  it  out 
to  peaches.  Selling  this  property  in  1908,  he  then  located  in  Win- 
ters, where,  on  Putah  creek,  he  has  a  small  prune  orchard. 

The  marriage  of  Mr.  Pratt,  which  occurred  December  18.  1872, 
in  Grinnell,  Iowa,  united  him  with  Miss  Mary  J.  Hamilton,  who 
was  born  in  Syracuse,  N.  Y.,  and  whose  parents,  Andrew  J.  and 
Elizabeth  (Shaw)  Hamilton,  were  natives  of  New  York  and  Eng- 
land, respectively.  Mr.  Hamilton  died  in  Grinnell,  Iowa,  in  1875, 
and  Mrs.  Hamilton  in  New  York  in  1906.  Their  children  were  as 
follows:  Mary  J.  (Mrs.  Pratt),  Frank  F.,  James  V.,  William  A., 
Harriett  (Mrs.  0.  Mclntyre)  and  Andrew  J.  The  three  children 
born  to  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Pratt  are  Eaymond  E.,  a  fruit  grower  in 
Winters,  who  married  Miss  Sophia  Dnnnebeck  and  has  one  child, 
Cecil;  Edith  M.,  a  graduate  of  the  San  Jose  normal  school  and 
now  the  wife  of  Dr.  M.  W.  Haworth  of  Sacramento  and  the  mother 
of  two  children,  Edith  Claire  and  Maiva  Wells;  and  Elmer  H.,  who 
makes  his  home  in  Lodi  with  his  wife,  formerly  Bernice  Thistle,  and 
their  daughter,  Dorothy. 

Mr.  Pratt  is  a  stanch  Republican,  prompt  to  lend  to  his  party 
all  the  influence  in  his  power,  and  as  a  citizen  of  broad,  generous 
principles  and  sterling  characteristics,  fully  merits  the  wide  esteem 
which,  throughout  his  career,  he  has  enjoyed.  His  wife  is  a 
woman  of  rare  qualities  and  as  an  active  member  of  the  Christian 
Church  of  Winters  is  untiring  in  her  aid  of  the  many  worthy  causes 
supported  by  that  institution. 


JAMES  G.  CECIL 

An  identification  of  thirty  years  with  the  history  of  the 
west  enabled  Mr.  Cecil  to  acquire  a  large  fund  of  information 
concerning  the  resources  and  possibilities  of  this  section  of  the 
country.     From  the  time  of  crossing  the  plains  lie  made  his  home 


278  HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

in  California,  with  the  exception  of  a  comparatively  brief  sojourn 
in  Oregon  and  for  many  years  he  was  one  of  the  extensive  farmers 
of  Yolo  county,  where  since  his  death  his  widow  has  managed  his 
interests  and  developed  them  into  income-producers  of  excep- 
tional importance.  The  capability  in  ranching  which  he  displayed 
forms  also  an  important  element  in  her  personality.  Competent 
judges  assert  that  comparatively  few  ranchers  of  the  county 
surpass  her  in  sagacious  judgment  and  discriminating  management 
of  landed  tracts.  In  evidence  of  this  statement  mention  is  made 
of  her  early  identification  witb  the  fruit  and  nut  industry  and 
her  shrewd  foresight  in  the  planting  of  seventeen  acres  in  almond 
trees,  from  which  now  she  receives  an  important  annual  income. 

The  isolated  settlement  at  Sand  Hill,  Knox  county,  Mo.,  where 
James  G.  Cecil  was  born  in  1836,  is  famous  as  the  birthplace  of 
the  noted  humorist,  Mark  Twain.  The  parents  of  James  G.  were 
Samuel  S.  and  Lillian  (Richardson)  Cecil.  The  former  traced  his 
lineage  to  the  illustrious  English  family  of  Cecils  and  for  many 
years  engaged  in  farming  in  Missouri,  but  during  1863  accompanied 
an  expedition  across  the  country  to  California,  where  he  died 
in  1895  at  a  very  advanced  age.  The  son,  James  G.,  had  come 
west  in  1862  and  settled  on  Putah  creek  in  Solano  county  near 
the  Yolo  county  line,  where  he  took  up  land  and  engaged  in  raising 
grain.  At  that  time  Nevada  offered  the  best  market  for  produce 
and  the  greater  part  of  the  grain  was  freighted  over  the  mountains 
to  mining  camps  and  villages  in  the  other  state.  Going  to  Oregon 
in  1864,  in  that  year  Mr.  Cecil  married  Miss  Eliza  Lindsay,  a  native 
of  Kentucky,  their  wedding  being  solemnized  in  the  city  of  Port- 
land. The  bride  had-  arrived  in  Oregon  only  a  short  time  before 
her  marriage,  having  come  across  the  plains  with  her  parents, 
Hiram  and  Mary  (Lilly)  Lindsay.  After  a  brief  sojourn  in  Oregon 
the  Lindsay  family  came  to  California  and  settled  on  a  ranch  near 
Madison,  Yolo  county,  where  Mr.  Lindsay  died  in  1870  and  his 
wife  five  years  later.  For  a  long  period  he  held  prominent  identifi- 
cation with  the  blue  lodge  of  Masonry  and  in  his  life  he  always 
endeavored  to  exemplify  the  philanthropic  teachings  of  the  order. 

Coming  to  Yolo  county  as  a  permanent  resident  in  1867,  James 
G.  Cecil  secured  a  quarter  section  north  of  the  village  of  Davis 
and  for  fourteen  years  he  gave  his  undivided  attention  to  the 
improvement  of  the  property.  Next  he  purchased  three  hundred 
and  twenty  acres  in  the  same  locality  and  eventually  he  purchased 
a  ranch  of  one  hundred  and  twenty-three  acres,  where  he  remained 
until  his  death  in  1892.  Since  then  Mrs.  Cecil  has  managed  the 
property  and  has  increased  its  productiveness.  From  the  harvest 
of  1910  she  secured  thirty-five  sacks  of  barley  per  acre.  Other 
crops  have  been  correspondingly  valuable  and  the  entire  appear- 


HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  283 

anee  of  the  ranch  bespeaks  her  thrifty  management.  While  not 
neglecting  the  least  detail  pertaining  to  the  prosperity  of  the 
ranch,  she  finds  leisure  for  participation  in  charitable  enterprises, 
for  information  concerning  educational  advancement  in  the  county 
and  for  active  membership  in  the  Davis  Presbyterian  Church, 
besides  enjoying  the  social  life  of  the  community  and  contributing 
to  its  moral  upbuilding. 


WILLIAM  BYAS  GIBSON 

Among  several  farmers  and  stockmen  of  note  lost  to  the 
country  around  Woodland,  Yolo  county,  Cal.,  during  recent  years, 
was  William  Byas  Gibson,  who  passed  away  at  his  home  February 
15,  1906.  A  man  of  noble  qualities  and  exceptional  business  abil- 
ity, his  generous  assistance  toward  the  development  of  the  county 
will  be  long  remembered  by  his  co-workers. 

May  30,  1831,  Mr.  Gibson  was  born  in  Louisa  county,  Ya.,  forty 
miles  from  Richmond,  which  region  his  parents  left  six  years 
later,  settling  in  Howard  county,  Mo.,  where  the  son  acquired  a 
public  school  education.  His  father,  William  B.  Gibson,  Jr., 
a  skilled  brick  mason,  also  a  native  of  Louisa  county,  was  born 
in  the  year  1800,  the  second  eldest  son  of  William  B.  Gibson,  Sr., 
of  Irish  descent,  who  was  a  soldier  in  the  Revolutionary  war  and 
afterwards  prominent  in  Virginia,  where  he  owned  a  large  cotton 
plantation  and  held  numerous  slaves  according  to  the  custom  in 
that  state  in  that  period.  William  B.  Gibson,  Jr.,  married  Miss 
Susan  Turney,  who  was  born  near  Richmond,  Ya.,  and  who  passed 
away  in  1875  at  the  home  of  her  daughter,  Mrs.  Emma  (Gibson) 
Cooper,  at  Napa,  Cal.,  her  husband  having  died  in  Missouri  in 
1846. 

In  1850,  William  Byas  Gibson,  of  this  review,  intending  to 
join  his  brother  Thomas,  who  had  come  to  California  with  some 
other  '49ers,  left  the  home  of  his  youth  with  a  party  of  "over- 
landers,"  using  as  his  means  of  transportation  a  wagon  drawn 
by  a  six-mule  team.  The  party  crossed  the  Missouri  river  March 
29,  in  the  year  mentioned,  and  followed  the  westward  trail  for 
three  months,  until  Mr.  Gibson  made  his  last  camp  in  Yolo  county. 
Cal.,  near  Woodland,  and  built  a  modest  home  on  Cache  creek. 
October  30  he  went  to  Scott  Bar.  where  he  mined  for  a  time.  July 
5,  1851,  he  returned  to  Cache  creek  and  homesteaded  a  claim  of 
one   hundred   and   sixty   acres,    four   miles   ami    a    half   northeast    of 


284  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

Woodland,  where  he  entered  upon  a  successful  career  as  a  grain- 
grower  and  stock-raiser.  Six  years  later  he  sold  this  property, 
but  soon  afterward  bought  three  hundred  and  twenty  acres  ad- 
joining the  present  town  plat  of  AVoodland,  which  was  the  nucleus 
of  his  later  three  thousand  acres  estate  in  Yolo  county.  In  con- 
nection with  general  farming  he  made  a  specialty  of  the  breeding 
of  high-grade  cattle,  selling  his  stock  throughout  the  state,  and 
was  the  owner  of  seventy-five  registered  Shorthorn  Durhams. 
Besides  his  property  in  California,  he  had  a  ranch  of  six  hundred 
and  forty  acres  in  Pecos  county,  Texas. 

December  23,  1857,  Mr.  Gibson  married,  in  Yolo  county,  Miss 
Mary  Isabelle  Cook,  a  native  of  Boyle  county,  Ky.,  who  had  moved 
to  Jackson  county,  Mo.,  with  her  parents,  Joseph  and  Elizabeth 
(Chiles)  Cook,  of  Kentucky  birth,  and  had  come  with  them  to 
California  in  1853,  by  way  of  the  overland  trail,  making  the  journey 
with  ox-teams  and  consuming  five  months  en  route.  The  family 
located  in  Yolo  county,  and  here  Mr.  Cook  became  a  farmer  and 
achieved  honor  as  a  citizen.  He  died  at  the  home  of  his  daughter, 
Mrs.  Gibson,  in  his  eighty-seventh  year,  April  1,  1901,  his  wife 
having  passed  away  in  her  seventy-third  year,  August  22,  1893. 
To  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Gibson  three  sons  were  born:  Robert  J.,  of 
Woodland,  who  married  Elnora  Root,  of  Zomora,  and  has  a  son, 
William  Byas;  Thomas  Ballard  of  Woodland,  who  married  Virginia 
Lee  Root  and  has  a  daughter  Zellah,  who  is  the  wife  of  Dr.  Elberg 
of  San  Luis  Obispo,  Cab;  and  Joseph,  who  married  Surene  Allen 
of  Winters,  Yolo  county,  and  died  November  20,  1897,  leaving  four 
children:  J.  Wray;  Coloma  L.  (Mrs.  Snaveley),  of  Woodland; 
Ouida  B.  (Mrs.  Chester  Sackett)  of  Winters;  and  Gazeua.  The 
evening  of  life  found  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Gibson  blessed  with  the  world's 
comforts,  even  with  its  luxuries,  and  surrounded  by  loving  friends 
and  relatives  who  honored  them  for  their  noble  qualities  of  head 
and  heart;  and  since  he  passed  away  she  is,  if  possible,  held 
doubly  dear  by  all  who  know  her. 

Politically  Mr.  Gibson  was  a  Democrat,  a  firm  supporter  of 
the  principles  of  his  party  and  keenly  alert  in  his  apprehension  of 
timely  economic  questions.  His  success  in  life  was  universally  con- 
ceded to  be  the  result  of  his  own  inherent  qualities  of  thrift  and 
perseverance.  Of  humane  and  generous  principles,  he  became 
widely  known  for  his  kindliness  and  for  his  material  assistance  of 
deserving  people  in  trouble.  In  a  public-spirited  way  he  responded 
promptly  to  all  demands  in  the  interest  of  the  community.  Mrs. 
Mary  Isabelle  (Cook)  Gibson,  a  woman  of  rare  tact  and  sympathy, 
still  lives  at  the  old  home  which  has  been  hers  ever  since  her 
marriage  and  continues  the  charities  in  which  her  husband  was 
interested  in  the  days  of  his  active  life. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  285 

HARRY"   RUSSELL    SAUNDERS 

It  is  with  pride  that  Harry  Russell  Saunders  claims  California 
as  his  native  commonwealth  and  proudly  asserts  that  YTolo  county, 
where  he  lived  most  of  the  time  since  childhood  and  where  now 
he  is  an  influential  citizen  and  popular  official,  yields  precedence  to 
no  other  part  of  the  great  west  in  its  agricultural  possibilities  and 
exceptional  resources.  Himself  in  the  prime  of  manly  strength 
(born  September  8,  1864,)  he  is  a  native  of  the  neighboring  county 
of  Solano,  having  been  born  near  old  Tremont,  and  his  first  recol- 
lections cluster  around  scenes  and  sights  there  and  in  Yolo  county. 
As  he  contrasts  the  activities  and  improvements  of  the  present  day 
with  the  conditions  of  the  past,  he  recognizes  that  such  results 
would  have  been  impossible  without  a  natural  wealth  of  soil  and  a 
vast  undeveloped  richness  of  resources.  In  official  positions  he  has 
proved  efficient  and  prompt,  attending  to  the  duties  connected 
with  the  post  in  a  manner  indicative  of  his  ability  and  trust- 
worthiness. 

The  father  of  the  gentleman  above  named  was  Ira  Saunders, 
a  pioneer  of  the  early  '50s  in  California  and  a  man  of  robust  con- 
stitution, well  qualified  by  natural  endowments  to  endure  the 
vicissitudes  associated  with  frontier  existence.  Three  times  he 
crossed  the  plains  and  on  each  trip  he  was  called  upon  to  go 
through  hardships  and  dangers,  but  in  each  instance  he  reached  his 
destination  without  delay  and  in  safety.  His  early  home  had  been 
in  Michigan  and  there  he  had  met  and  married  Miss  Mary  Baker, 
who  accompanied  him  in  his  removal  to  the  coast  and  endured  with 
him  the  discouragements  incident  to  the  conditions  in  that  era. 
For  a  time  they  made  their  home  on  a  ranch  in  Solano  county  and  it 
was  on  that  large  farm  their  son  was  born.  Later  they  went  to 
Davisville  and  put  up  one  of  the  very  first  houses  built  in  that  then 
insignificant  hamlet.  The  mother  died  in  California  in  1876  and 
later  the  father  returned  to  Branch  county,  Mich.,  where  in  retire- 
ment from  active  labors  he  spent  his  last  days,  passing  away  in 
1902.  Many  of  the  early  settlers  of  Davisville  still  remember  him 
and  speak  with  admiration  of  his  splendid  qualities  of  mind  and 
heart. 

An  attendance  of  some  years  in  the  schools  of  Davisville,  Y^olo 
county,  and  in  those  of  Jackson  and  Union  City,  Mich.,  for  four 
years  gave  Mr.  Saunders  the  advantage  of  a  practical  education 
which  proved  of  inestimable  value  to  his  later  activities.  Upon 
returning  to  Yrolo  county  in  1880  he  engaged  in  agricultural  and 
horticultural  pursuits  and  his  crops  found  a  ready  sale  at  the 
highest  market  prices.  Later  he  was  employed  in  the  grocery  busi- 
ness at  Woodland  and  made  many  friends  among  the  people   of 


286  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

the  city  and  surrounding  country  by  bis  obliging  disposition,  pleas- 
ant manner  and  sterling  integrity.  A  borne  was  established  by  him 
in  1894,  when  he  was  united  in  marriage  with  Miss  Grace  M.  Stone, 
a  native  of  Iowa  and  a  woman  of  attractive  attributes  of  character. 
Of  this  union  two  children  were  born,  Mildred  and  Harry  B.  Ever 
since  attaining  his  majority  Mr.  Saunders  has  been  unswerving  in 
his  allegiance  to  the  Republican  party  and  in  its  local  councils 
he  wields  considerable  influence.  Having  served  one  year  as 
deputy  county  clerk  in  1905-06  he  was  nominated  for  county  clerk 
in  1910  and  was  elected  to  the  office,  taking  the  oath  January  2, 
1911,  but  before  this  he  was  appointed  county  clerk  December  14, 
1910,  to  fill  out  the  unexpired  term  of  Charles  F.  Hadsall,  deceased. 
A  number  of  the  local  fraternal  orders  have  the  benefit  of  his 
active  identification  with  their  work  and  his  contributions  to  their 
enterprises. 


ALVIS  G.  HUNT 

Tlie  interests  that  engage  the  attention  of  Mr.  Hunt  are  as 
important  as  they  are  varied,  and  include  the  ownership  of  busi- 
ness and  residence  property  in  Woodland,  real  estate  in  Oakland, 
San  Francisco  and  Chicago,  and  a  valuable  fruit  and  alfalfa  ranch 
on  Cache  creek  near  Yolo,  which  he  leases.  Participation  in  the 
financial  affairs  of  Woodland  comes  through  the  ownership  of 
shares  of  stock  in  the  First  National  Bank,  also  the  Bank  of 
Woodland,  both  of  which  prosperous  institutions  have  received  the 
encouragement  of  bis  steadfast  support  and  wise  co-operation. 
For  many  years  he  owned  a  grain  ranch  near  Wildfiower,  Fresno 
county,  but  this  property  was  operated  by  tenants,  his  own  time 
being  given  to  the  grain  and  warehouse  business.  In  the  days 
before  the  railroad  was  extended  the  wheat  was  hauled  in  Wood- 
land in  large  "prairie  schooners"  from  all  parts  of  the  county, 
purchased  by  him  and  shipped  to  Port  Costa,  Contra  Costa  county, 
from  winch  point  it  was  sent  all  over  the  world.  Those  were  the 
years  of  enormous  crops  of  wheat  and  barley  and  the  shipments 
exceeded  anything  possible  in  more  recent  times,  when  the  great 
ranches  bave  been  divided  up  into  small  farms  and  devoted  to  in- 
tensive agriculture. 

Tbe  Hunt  family  is  of  southern  lineage  and  English  extrac- 
tion. Asa  and  Diana  (Stanley)  Hunt  (the  latter  a  Quaker  by 
birth)  reared  eight  daughters  and  two  sons,  of  whom  the  youngest, 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  289 

William  Gaston  Hunt,  was  born  in  Guilford  county,  X.  C,  Feb- 
ruary 12,  1827.  About  1843  the  family  removed  from  North  Caro- 
lina, where  the  father  had  engaged  in  the  milling  business  and  also 
conducted  a  cotton  gin,  to  Andrew  county,  Mo.,  where  he  took  up 
government  land.  During  1846  the  mother  passed  away  and  in 
1848  the  father  was  taken  from  the  family  by  death.  The  chil- 
dren decided  to  join  an  expedition  to  California  and  May  1,  1849, 
left  their  old  Missouri  home  with  a  train  of  five  wagons.  Three 
payments  had  been  made  upon  the  home  farm,  and,  thinking  they 
might  wish  to  return,  they  left  with  the  justice  of  the  peace  the 
money  necessary  for  the  fourth  payment.  Two  months  after  their 
arrival  in  California  they  received  a  letter  from  Missouri  stating 
that  the  justice  of  the  peace  was  dead  and  that  they  had  forfeited 
their  right  to  their  land  through  having  failed  to  make  the  fourth 
payment.  Thus  was  broken  the  last  link  that  bound  them  to  their 
old  home,  and  they  never  returned  to  Missouri.  Establishing  a 
hotel  at  Hangtown,  the  two  brothers  left  a.  sister  to  manage  it 
while  they  engaged  in  freighting  between  Sacramento  and  the 
mines. 

As  early  as  1850  William  Gaston  Hunt  began  to  buy  live  stock. 
During  that  year  he  bought  a  herd  of  cattle  at  Carson  City,  drove 
them  over  the  mountains  and  turned  them  out  to  graze  along  the 
banks  of  Cache  creek,  on  a  ranch  where  he  lived  for  some  years. 
To  that  place  he  brought  his  sister  in  the  spring  of  1851.  His 
only  brother,  Alvison,  died  in  1852.  During  the  autumn  of  1853 
he  married  Miss  Jennie  Day,  a  native  of  South  Bend,  Ind.,  and 
a  daughter  of  Dale  Lot  and  Sybil  (Russell)  Day.  From  1853 
until  1863  Mr.  Hunt  engaged  in  raising  sheep  and  had  as  many 
as  fifteen  thousand  head  in  his  flocks  at  one  time.  During  1863 
he  sent  one  drove  to  Oregon  and  another  to  Lower  California, 
after  which  he  engaged  principally  in  general  farming.  Later  he 
became  interested  in  buying  grain  and  in  his  warehouses  at  times 
he  had  as  much  as  $300,000  worth  of  grain.  In  addition  he  served 
as  president  of  the  Yolo  county  winery.  From  1875  until  his  re- 
moval to  Oakland  in  1897  he  resided  in  Woodland  on  the  corner  of 
First  and  Oak  avenues.  During  his  identification  with  the  town 
he  helped  to  build  the  splendid  city  sewer  system,  aided  in  estab- 
lishing the  city  water  works,  became  a  stockholder  in  the  Bank 
of  Woodland,  and  was  a  factor  in  practically  every  enterprise  of 
that  period  projected  for  the  material  upbuilding  of  the  place. 
With  his  wife  he  gave  allegiance  to  the  Society  of  Friends  and 
loved  the  earnest  doctrines  of  that  peaceful  sect,  although  he  also 
was  generous  in  contributions  to  other  religious  movements.  From 
the  organization  of  the  Republican  party  until  his  death  he  ad- 
hered to  the  principles  of  the  Republican  party  and  his  only  son 
also   has  been   a  lifelong  member   of  that   organization. 


290  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

For  some  time  after  the  demise  of  William  Gaston  Hunt, 
which  occurred  in  1899,  his  widow  continued  to  make  her  home 
in  Oakland,  and  there  her  death  occurred  April  27,  1911.  She 
had  come  across  the  plains  in  1850  with  her  father,  two  brothers 
and  sister,  and  had  settled  in  Sacramento,  later  removing  to 
Stockton.  Dale  Lot  Day,  who  was  born  near  Morristown,  N.  J., 
in  1785,  died  in  Nevada  at  the  age  of  eighty-two  years.  He  had 
been  a  jDioneer  builder  in  Stockton  and  had  erected  the  first  insane 
asylum  in  that  locality.  His  wife,  who  died  in  South  Bend,  Ind., 
in  young  womanhood,  was  a  daughter  of  Hezekiah  Russell,  a  sol- 
dier in  the  Revolutionary  war.  The  four  brothers  of  Mrs.  Hunt 
settled  in  the  west:  Russell  died  in  Woodland  in  1904;  Lot  died 
in  Oakland;  John  died  in  Woodland,  and  Roland  passed  away  in 
Nevada.  Her  two  sisters,  Delighta,  Mrs.  Charles  Traver,  and 
Mary,  Mrs.  Hopkins,  both  died  in  Sacramento  in  1899  on  the  same 
day.  After  her  removal  to  Oakland  she  united  with  the  First 
Congregational  Church  and  remained  in  its  communion  until  her 
death.  One  of  the  most  delightful  experiences  of  the  later  years 
of  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Hunt  was  their  tour  around  the  world,  which  af- 
forded them  a  merited  recreation  after  years  of  ceaseless  indus- 
try. It  also  gave  them  an  appreciated  opportunity  of  visiting- 
points  of  interest  in  Great  Britain  and  on  the  continent.  Their 
family  comprised  two  daughters  and  the  son  whose  name  intro- 
duces this  article.  The  older  daughter,  Alice  Edith,  became  the 
wife  of  L.  D.  Stephens  of  Woodland.  The  younger  daughter,  Rowena 
D.,  is  the  wife  of  E.  J.  DuPue,  of  San  Francisco.  The  only  son 
was  born  in  Yolo  county  April  19,  1857,  received  his  education  in 
the  University  of  California  and  a  commercial  college  in  Sacra- 
mento, and  after  graduating  from  the  latter  in  1875  engaged 
with  his  father  in  the  grain  and  warehouse  business,  of  which 
eventually  he  became  sole  proprietor.  His  attractive  home  at  No. 
518  First  street.  Woodland,  is  presided  over  graciously  by  his 
cultured  wife,  formerly  Miss  Alice  Stump,  of  San  Francisco,  and 
has  been  brightened  by  the  cheerful  presence  of  two  children, 
Irvin  Gaston  and  Jennie.  Mrs.  Hunt  is  a  daughter  of  Irvin  C. 
Stump,  a  prominent  pioneer  of  San  Francisco  and  for  years  a 
leading  politician  of  that  city,  but  now  a  resident  of  New  York. 


SARAH  A.  LAUGENOUR-HUSTON 

The  descendant  of  German  ancestors  on  the  paternal  side, 
Sarah  A.  Laugenour  was  born  on  a  southern  plantation  near  Salem, 
Forsyth  county,  N.  C,  March  19,  1848,  the  daughter  of  Samuel  H. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  291 

and  Lisetta  (Fisher)  Laugenour.  The  grandmother  on  the  mater- 
nal side  was  in  maidenhood  a  Miss  Hamilton  from  Scotland.  Early 
representatives  of  the  Laugenour  family  were  members  of  the 
Moravian  Church  and  located  in  the  Moravian  settlement  in  Forsyth 
county,  where  Count  Von  Zindendorf  had  purchased  a  grant  of  land 
for  the  purpose  of  establishing  a  boarding  school  for  girls  in  Salem. 
A  large  brick  building  was  erected  for  this  purpose  next  door  to 
the  church,  and  Salem  College  was  founded  in  1804.  There  is  was 
that  Sarah  A.  Laugenour  was  educated,  under  the  influence  of 
religious  and  cultured  teachers.  Her  parents  were  members  of 
the  Baptist  Church. 

The  eldest  of  twelve  children,  four  of  whom  died  in  infancy, 
Sarah  A.  Laugenour  was  eighteen  years  of  age  when  with  her 
parents  she  came  to  California  by  way  of  Panama.  The  family 
arrived  in  Yolo  county,  Cal.,  November  26,  1866,  and  located  on  a 
farm  near  Knights  Landing,  continuing  there  for  a  few  years  or 
until  removing  to  College  City,  Colusa  county.  Before  leaving 
Yolo  county  Miss  Laugenour  had  taught  school  up  to  the  time 
of  her  marriage  to  Walter  S.  Huston,  January  20,  1869,  when  she 
became  a  resident  of  Knights  Landing,  where  her  husband  was  en- 
gaged in  the  mercantile  business.  It  was  during  their  ten  years 
residence  in  that  town  that  their  first  four  children  were  born, 
Walter  Samuel,  Arthur  Craig,  Edward  P.  and  Mary,  the  latter 
dying  in  infancy.  In  the  fall  of  1878,  after  the  disastrous  flood 
of  the  preceding  February,  the  family  moved  to  Woodland  to 
make  their  permanent  home,  and  it  was  there  that  their  two  young- 
est children  were  born,  Harry  Lyle  and  Bertha  Leora,  the  latter 
now  the  wife  of  James  L.  Hare.  At  this  writing,  1912,  Mrs.  Huston 
is  the  happy  grandmother  of  sis  girls  and  four  boys.  She  and  her 
husband  united  with  the  Woodland  Christian  Church  by  letter 
from  the  Knights  Landing  Church  soon  after  their  removal  from 
the  former  city. 

An  organization  which  claims  much  of  Mrs.  Huston's  thought 
and  attention  is  the  Woodland  W.  C.  T.  U.,  which  was  organized 
by  Frances  E.  Willard  in  1883.  After  uniting  with  the  organization 
she  served  as  president  of  the  local  union,  as  county  president  and 
as  county  superintendent  of  press  work  for  twenty-seven  years.  She 
edited  a  column  in  the  Woodland  Daily  Democrat  when  William 
Saunders  was  its  editor,  and  also  supplied  material  for  a  column  in 
the  Woodland  Mail  when  it  was  published  by  W.  R.  Ellis.  A 
paralytic  stroke  ended  the  business  career  of  her  husband  three  and 
one-half  years  previous  to  his  death,  which  occurred  September 
8,  1894.  With  an  invalid  husband  to  care  for  and  children  to  edu- 
cate, she  took  up  the  work  outside  of  her  home  at  the  age  of 
forty-three  years.  She  established  the  Home  Alliance,  a  local 
newspaper  devoted  to  the  prohibition  of  the  liquor  traffic  and  equal 


292  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

rights  for  women,  the  first  issue  appearing  July  7,  1891.  Under 
her  management  the  paper  has  been  an  important  factor  in  banish- 
ing the  open  saloon  from  almost  the  entire  county,  and  a  help- 
ful influence  in  securing  the  adoption  of  the  state  constitutional 
amendment  giving  the  ballot  to  the  women  of  California.  Mrs. 
Huston  attributes  the  success  of  The  Home  Alliance  largely  to  the 
liberal  support  given  it  by  her  co-workers  in  the  W.  C.  T.  U.,  in 
the  churches,  the  professional  and  business  men  and  women  of 
Woodland,  and  the  farmers  throughout  the  county.  In  the  evening 
of  life  she  is  enjoying  congenial  work  and  the  society  of  her  chil- 
dren, who  are  all  married  and  settled  in  their  own  homes,  and  of  her 
ten  grandchildren.  While  her  business,  like  all  reform  work,  has  not 
brought  great  financial  gain,  she  is  in  possession  of  what  is  far  bet- 
ter in  the  satisfaction  that  comes  only  from  service  to  God  and 
humanity. 


CHARLES    ROSSITER    HOPPIN 

Among  the  early  settlers  of  Yolo  county  whose  names  will 
ever  lie  kept  in  grateful  remembrance  is  that  of  the  late  Charles 
Rossiter  Hoppin,  one  of  the  very  first  pioneers  to  embark  in  the 
stock  industry  within  the  limits  of  this  county,  also  one  of  the 
first  to  undertake  extensive  operations  as  a  raiser  of  grain,  and 
likewise  a  leading  promoter  of  movements  for  the  local  upbuild- 
ing. When  first  his  eyes  rested  upon  the  environment  so  familiar 
to  his  later  activities  he  beheld  a  vast  stretch  of  unfilled  country, 
apparently  suitable  only  for  grazing  purposes.  Oaks  made  the 
landscape  beautiful  and  Cache  creek  afforded  abundant  water. 
Here  and  there  a  cattle-ranger's  cabin  broke  the  monotony  of  the 
view  or  a  herd  of  stock  betokened  the  presence  of  cowboys  in 
the  vicinity,  but  for  the  most  part  the  surroundings  presented  an 
aspect  wholly  primeval.  Civilization  had  not  yet  shed  its  benign 
influence  over  the  fair  and  fruitful  land  and  nature  still  held 
almost  undisputed  sway.  It  would  have  required  a  far-seeing  and 
optimistic  vision  to  predict  the  prosperity  of  the  present  day,  when 
multitudes  of  comfortable  country  homes  indicate  the  presence 
of  a  contented  throng  of  progressive  agriculturists  and  fields 
of  waving  grain  betoken  seasons  of  bountiful  harvests.  Mr. 
Hoppin  was  one  who  grasped  the  possibilities  of  the  soil  and  cli- 
mate, and  was  not  only  one  of  the  first  to  raise  grain,  but  also 
alfalfa  and  fruit.     Some  of  the  trees  planted  by  him  on  the  ranch 


4>&aS    S^cfaku*. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  295 

in  185.'!  are  still  in  bearing.  In  company  with  others  he  hnilt  the 
first  irrigation  ditch,  tlms  utilizing  the  waters  of  Cache  creek. 

Born  in  New  York  state.  Charles  Rossiter  Hoppin  started  on 
his  westward  migrations  in  early  life,  for  he  was  but  a  boy  when 
lie  settled  at  Niles,  Mich.,  and  there  he  attended  the  public  schools 
for  some  years.  As  soon  as  he  heard  of  the  discovery  of  gold  in 
California  he  made  preparations  to  come  to  the  coast,  and  during 
the  spring  of  1849  he  joined  an  expedition  which  crossed  the 
plains  with  wagons  and  oxen.  Fair  success  came  to  him  in  the 
mines,  but  in  a  few  months  he  tired  of  the  work,  and  early  in 
1850  he  came  to  the  ranch  in  Yolo  county  that  still  is  owned  by 
the  family.  With  his  brother,  John,  he  bought  one-fourth  of  the 
old  Spanish  Bancho  Rio  de  Jesus  Maria,  and  also  purchased  stock 
to  put  on  the  land.  In  later  years  he  engaged  in  raising  hay  and 
grain.  The  increase  in  land  valuations  and  the  large  returns  from 
the  crops  made  him  one  of  the  leading  farmers  of  the  county. 
and  he  continued  active  in  agriculture  until  the  infirmities  of  age 
compelled  his  entire  relinquishment  of  work. 

For  a  long  period  after  his  arrival  in  the  west,  Mr.  Hoppin 
remained  a  bachelor,  but  eventually  he  returned  to  the  home  of 
his  youth,  and  there  (Niles,  Mich.),  in  1874,  he  married  Miss  Emily 
Bacon,  who  was  born  in  that  city  and  received  excellent  educa- 
tional advantages  at  Mount  Holyoke  Seminary  in  Kalamazoo, 
Mich.  The  family  of  which  she  was  a  member  belonged  to  the 
honored  and  influential  pioneer  element  of  Michigan,  and  her 
father,  Hon.  Nathaniel  Bacon,  became  one  of  the  leading  jurists 
of  the  state,  being  especially  prominent  in  the  southwestern  part 
thereof.  For  years  he  served  as  a  judge  in  Branch,  Cass  and 
Berrien  counties,  and  often  he  was  called  to  hold  court  in  other 
parts  of  the  commonwealth,  where  his  reputation  for  impartiality 
and  logical  reasoning  had  preceded  him.  While  still  rendering- 
distinguished  service  as  a  jurist  he  was  stricken  with  a  fatal  illness 
and  soon  was  called  by  death  from  the  scene  of  his  professional 
successes. 

The  family  of  Charles  R.  and  Emily  Hoppin  comprised  six 
children,  but  one  of  the  sons  died  in  infancy  and  another,  Edward, 
passed  from  earth  in  1900,  three  years  before  the  demise  of  the 
husband  and  father,  who  passed  away  at  the  old  homestead  in 
May  of  1903.  The  eldest  son,  who  is  the  namesake  of  his  father, 
occupies  a  part  of  the  home  ranch,  and  with  his  wife  and  three 
children  has  a  comfortable  home  on  the  estate.  Harriet,  Mrs. 
August  J.  Kergel,  has  two  children;  her  husband  farms  a  portion 
of  the  Hoppin  estate.  Edith  married  Luther  ('.  Young  and  remains 
with  her  mother,  Mi'.  Young  cultivating  a  portion  of  the  ranch. 
The    voum-est    child,    Dorothea,    is    a    student    in    Snell's    Seminary 


296  HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

at  Berkeley.  In  her  religious  associations  Mrs.  Hoppin  has  been 
identified  from  girlhood  with  the  Episcopal  Church.  Mr.  Hoppin 
was  also  a  devoted  church  member  and  contributed  generously  to 
missionary  causes.  After  his  death  Mrs.  Hoppin  became  the  man- 
ager of  the  ranch,  and  in  this  work  she  has  had  the  efficient 
assistance  of  her  sons  and  sons-in-law,  all  of  whom  are  skilled 
farmers  and  owners  of  fine  herds  of  Holstein  dairy  stock.  Six 
hundred  and  forty  acres  are  under  cultivation,  and  of  this  tract 
three  hundred  acres  are  irrigated,  affording  excellent  oppor- 
tunities for  the  raising  of  alfalfa  and  fruit.  A  vineyard  of  choice 
grapes  has  been  made  a  profitable  adjunct  of  the  ranch,  and  the 
raising  of  grain  is  still  followed  with  noteworthy  success-. 


P.  H.  McGARR 

One  of  the  enterprising  men  of  Yolo  county  who  has  made 
his  home  here  since  1886,  Mr.  McGarr  is  well  known  throughout 
Winters  and  vicinity  not  only  as  an  orehardist  of  exceptional  abil- 
ity, but  also  as  a  most  public-spirited  citizen,  prompt  to  lend  his 
efforts  toward  the  progress  of  the  community. 

A  native  of  Canada,  Mr.  McGarr  \s  birth  occurred  January  6, 
1865,  in  Guelph,  where  he  received  his  education,  spending  his 
youth  on  the  farm  of  his  parents,  Patrick  and  Ann  (Cunningham) 
McGarr,  natives  of  Guelph.  At  the  age  of  twenty  he  came  to 
California,  successfully  conducting  a  farm  in  Solano  county  for 
eleven  years  prior  to  his  removal  to  Yolo  county,  where  he  has 
since  been  engaged  in  fruit  raising.  For  many  years  he  leased 
an  orchard  in  the  vicinity  of  Winters,  but  in  the  fall  of  1911  he 
accepted  the  position  of  foreman  for  M.  Kahn,  having  charge 
of  his  large  orchard,  located  three  miles  west  of  Winters,  to 
which  he  gives  his  undivided  time. 

In  Woodland,  February  29,  1892,  Mr.  McGarr  was  united  in 
marriage  with  Miss  Mary  L.  Baker,  whose  birth  occurred  in 
Solano  county,  and  whose  parents  crossed  the  plains  from  Illinois 
in  the  early  '50s.  She  died  in  September,  1907.  Six  children  were 
born  to  Mr.  and  Mrs.  McGarr,  as  follows:.  Francis  L.,  Henry  H. 
(both  of  Winters),  Edith  M.,  WTilliam  D.,  Clark  A.  and  Raymond 
P.,  the  four  last  mentioned  residing  at  home.  Mr.  McGarr 's 
second  marriage  occurred  in  San  Francisco  and  united  him  with 
Mary  Gotellie,  a  native  of  Italy,  who  by  a  former  marriage  had 
five;'  children,  Anthony,  Joseph  and  Louis.  A  Republican  in  poli- 
tics, Mr.  McGarr  is  a  broad  minded  and  generous  citizen,  interested 
in  all  public  movements  of  merit.  He  is  a  communicant  of  the  Holy 
Rosarv  Catholic  Church,  as  are  also  his  wife  and  family. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  299 

THOMAS  BALLARD  GIBSON 

It  would  be  difficult  to  name  any  important  enterprise  associated 
with  the  material  upbuilding  of  Woodland  which  has  lacked  the 
generous  co-operation  and  enthusiastic  support  of  Mr.  Gibson, 
who  indeed  stands  second  to  no  citizen  in  his  progressive  spirit 
and  devoted  loyalty  to  civic  development.  Having  spent  his  entire 
life  in  Woodland  and  Yolo  county,  he  has  been  familiar  from 
earliest  recollections  with  movements  for  the  common  welfare 
and  has  acquired  a  thorough  knowledge  of  local  possibilities. 
His  faith  in  future  advancement  is  surpassed  only  by  his  knowledge 
of  past  achievements.  Whether  commercial  affairs  are  projected 
or  educational  progress  is  demanded,  whether  modern  improve- 
ments are  instituted  in  the  city's  public  works  or  fraternal  organi- 
zations seek  adequate  quarters  for  their  meetings,  he  interests 
himself  in  all  and  has  demonstrated  the  possession  of  a  broad, 
rounded  citizenship  that  holds  itself  aloof  from  any  narrow  parti- 
sanship. 

The  boyhood  years  of  Thomas  B.  Gibson  were  passed  unevent- 
fully in  the  home  of  his  father,  William  B.  Gibson,  and  in  attend- 
ance upon  the  public  schools  and  Hesperian  College.  Born  October 
2,  18(51,  he  was  twenty  years  of  age  when  he  was  graduated  from 
Ilea  Id's  Business  College  in  San  Francisco.  Afterward  he  assisted 
his  father  in  farming  until  1885,  when  he  established  a  hardware 
store  at  Woodland  under  the  firm  name  of  T.  B.  Gibson  &  Co.. 
bis  partner  being-  Thomas  M.  Prior.  For  ten  years  they  occupied 
their  own  building  and  continued  in  partnership.  At  the  expiration 
of  that  time  he  purchased  his  partner's  interest,  and  until  January 
17,  1903,  he  continued  alone  in  the  Gibson  block,  at  the  corner  of 
Main  and  Elm  streets,  a  building  two  stories  high,  with  a  frontage 
of  one  hundred  and  seventy  feet  and  a  depth  of  from  eighty  to  one 
hundred  and  eighty  feet,  the  corner,  60x180  feet,  being  devoted  to 
the  hardware  business,  while  the  balance  is  arranged  for  five  stores. 
On  the  day  of  190.'!  previously  mentioned  the  hardware  business  was 
sold  to  C.  Sieber  &  Co.,  the  present  proprietors. 

As  the  first  president  of  the  Woodland  Milling  Company, 
Mr.  Gibson  had  been  interested  in  the  building  of  the  Woodland 
Flour  Mills,  with  a  capacity  of  one  hundred  barrels  per  day.  After 
the  plant  burned  to  the  ground  in  1903,  Mr.  Gibson  sold  his  stock 
to  the  Globe  Milling  Company.  With  his  brother,  R.  .).,  he  pur- 
chased the  Union  warehouse,  comprising  two  buildings.  50x300 
feet,  and  80x150  feet,  respectively.  During  1903  ho  bought  sixty 
acres  under  the  Yolo  County  Consolidated  ditch  and  this  he  put 
under  cultivation  to  alfalfa.  As  a  promoter  of  the  Woodland 
Creamery  Company  lie  assisted  in  establishing  a  concern  that    has 


300  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

been  most  helpful  to  the  dairy  interests  of  the  county,  and  after 
a  time  he  was  honored  with  the  office  of  president,  which  he  now 
fills,  his  executive  ability  being  indispensable  in  the  rapid  develop- 
ment of  the  plant. 

At  Blacks,  Yolo  county,  August  4,  1885,  Mr.  Gibson  married 
Miss  Virginia  Lee  Root,  who  was  born  near  Linneus,  Linn  county, 
Mo.,  and  is  a  daughter  of  James  and  Nancy  E.  Root,  a  pioneer 
family  of  Yolo  county.  The  only  child  of  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Gibson 
is  a  daughter,  Zellah  Lee,  now  Mrs.  Dr.  H.  M.  Elberg  of  San 
Luis  Obispo.  For  about  fourteen  years  the  family  resided  in  a 
cottage  on  Elm  street,  but  in  1905  they  removed  to  their  new 
and  elegant  residence,  at  the  south  end  of  College  street.  By 
virtue  of  his  birth  in  California,  Mr.  Gibson  is  a  member  of  the 
Native  Sons  of  the  Golden  West,  and  with  others  he  erected  the 
Native  Sons'  Hall  in  Woodland,  which  was  opened  in  March  of 
1905.  Fraternally  he  is  connected  with  Woodland  Lodge  No.  156, 
F.  &  A.  M.;  Woodland  Chapter  No.  46,  R.  A.  M.;  Woodland 
Commandery  No.  21,  K.  T. :  and  Islam  Temple,  A.  A.  0.  N  M.  S., 
of  San  Francisco,  being  also,  with  his  wife,  a  member  of  the 
Eastern  Star,  in  which  he  ranks  as  past  worthy  patron.  Since 
1884  he  has  heen  connected  with  the  Knights  of  Pythias,  and  in 
the  local  lodge  he  has  served  as  chancellor. 

While  engaged  in  the  hardware  business  Mr.  Gibson  assisted 
in  organizing  the  Pacific  Coast  Retail  Hardware  Association,  the 
first  of  its  kind  in  the  west.  The  first  meeting  was  held  in  Marys- 
ville,  Yuba  county,  in  1899,  when  John  C.  White  was  elected  presi- 
dent and  Mr.  Gibson  was  made  a  member  of  the  executive  board. 
In  addition  he  was  a  prominent  member  of  the  California  State 
Retail  Hardware  Dealers'  Association.  On  the  organization  of  the 
Sacramento  Valley  Development  Association  he  became  a  charter 
member  and  assisted  in  promoting  its  progress,  and  now  repre- 
sents Yolo  county  upon  its  board  of  trustees.  He  is  also  a  mem- 
ber of  the  California  Development  Board  of  San  Francisco  and  serv- 
ing as  a  member  of  its  board  of  directors.  He  was  one  of  the  organ- 
izers of  the  California  Live  Stock  Breeders'  Association  and  a  mem- 
ber of  the  board  of  directors.  He  is  also  president  of  the  Central 
Irrigation  Ditch  Company  that  supplies  Woodland  farms  on  the 
south  and  east  with  water  for  irrigation. 

In  politics  Mr.  Gibson  votes  with  the  Democratic  party.  With 
E.  P.  Huston  and  W.  P.  Craig  he  organized  the  Woodland  Cham- 
ber of  Commerce  and  aided  its  early  enterprises  through  his  service 
upon  its  executive  board.  As  a  member  of  the  board  of  trustees, 
he  favored  civic  improvements.  As  chairman  of  the  fire  and  water 
committee,  he  secured  two  new  wells  and  the  installation  of  an 
electric  pumping  plant  of  large  capacity.     The   all-night  lighting 


<>/  ^sd^^c/c^ejt— 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  303 

of  the  city  by  electricity  and  the  closing  of  the  saloons  at  mid- 
night were  two  movements  that  he  favored  with  intense  zeal,  and 
he  was  also  an  important  factor  in  the  substitution  of  cement  pave- 
ments for  board,  which  always  had  been  in  use  for  the  cross  streets. 
Any  other  movements  indispensable  to  the  permanent  welfare  of 
city  and  county  have  received  his  stalwart  championship  and  owe 
much  to  his  intelligent  advocacy. 


BARRY  E.  SACKETT 

One  of  the  most  prosperous  and  well  known  places  of  Yolo 
county,  Cal.,  and  indeed  of  the  entire  state,  is  the  Golden  Star 
orchard,  owned  and  operated  by  Harry  E.  Sackett,  whose  able 
and  efficient  conduct  of  this  place  has  brought  it  to  a  high  state 
of  cultivation,  so  that  its  product  has  gained  world-wide  fame  for 
its  particularly  fine  quality. 

The  son  of  an  old  pioneer  in  this  state,  and  one  who  built  up 
a  fine  and  extensive  property  in  this  county,  Mr.  Sackett  belongs 
to  a  family  whose  members  have  counted  greatly  in  the  history 
of  this  as  well  as  the  countries  of  Great  Britain,  and  he  has  in- 
herited the  sturdy  elements  of  the  race  and  carried  on  the  excel 
lent  work  of  his  father,  being  a  credit  to  his  family,  a  worthy 
bearer  of  the  honored  name. 

Born  January  13,  1864,  in  Solano  county,  a  half  mile  across 
Putah  creek  from  Winters,  the  eldest  son  of  Buel  R.  and  Susan 
(Williams)  Sackett,  Harry  E.  Sackett  was  here  reared  to  man- 
hood, receiving  an  excellent  training,  attending  the  Lafayette 
grammar  school  in  San  Francisco.  Upon  completing  his  studies 
he  engaged  in  horticulture,  spending  eight  years  in  Fresno  county, 
Cal.,  after  which  he  became  proprietor  of  a  commission  business 
in  San  Francisco,  his  trade  being  entirely  wholesale.  In  1907 
he  purchased  one  hundred  and  sixty-three  acres  adjoining  his 
father's  place,  which  he  now  operates,  having  twenty-eight  acres 
in  a  vineyard  of  the  tokay  variety.  Much  of  the  land  is  in  meadow 
and  pasture,  but  the  most  important  department  is  the  fifty-acre 
orchard  of  plums,  apricots  and  peaches,  which  vie  with  the  grapes 
in  their  profitable  cultivation  and  enormous  crops.  During  the 
season  of  1910  the  apricots  yielded  twenty  tons  and  the  peaches 
eighty-five  tons,  while  the  table  grapes  produced  fifty  tons  and 
were  marketed  in  thirty-five  hundred  crates.  Mr.  Saekett's  pack- 
ing   house    is    equipped    so    extensively    that    it    allows    for    all    the 


304  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

packing  of  the  fruit  raised  on  the  place  to  he  handled  for  shipping- 
there.  The  product  is  shipped  to  different  cities  in  the  east  under 
the  brand  "Golden  Star,"  and  is  in  demand  by  many  who  handle 
it  throughout  the  country.  Mr.  Sackett  has  named  his  place  the 
Golden  Star  orchard  because  of  the  brand  his  goods  carry  and  its 
reputation    is   wide   and   favorable. 

Mr.  Sackett  was  married  to  Lena  Bryee,  who  is  a  native  of 
Kentucky.  She  is  very  popular  in  their  community  and  is  an  ac- 
tive worker  in  the  Eebekah  Lodge  in  Winters,  while  her  husband 
holds  membership  with  the  Independent  Order  of  Odd  Fellows 
and  the  Woodmen  of  the  World. 

Mr.  Sackett  has  followed  closely  in  the  footsteps  of  his  emi- 
nent father,  devoting  all  his  time  and  all  of  his  splendid  energies 
to  the  cultivation  and  improvement  of  the  property,  and  his  ener- 
gies have  been  abundantly  justified  by  the  returns  he  has  received. 
Personally  he  is  practical  and  thorough  in  all  his  undertakings, 
temperate  in  all  his  habits,  and  he  holds  the  confidence  and  respect 
of  all   with  whom   he  is   associated. 


JAMES  M.  McHENRY 

To  Mr.  McHenry,  one  of  Yolo  county's  earliest  pioneers,  be- 
longs much  of  the  credit  for  the  establishment  of  both  business 
and  social  life  on  a  substantial  basis  in  that  section,  his  foresight 
and  executive  ability  having  been  of  incalculable  value  in  that  con- 
nection. 

A  native  of  White  county,  Ky.,  Mr.  McHenry  removed  to 
Missouri  with  his  parents,  who  spent  their  last  years  in  that  sec- 
tion. His  father,  James  McHenry,  a  farmer  by  occupation,  mar- 
ried Miss  Moody,  a  relative  of  the  famous  Evangelist  Moody. 
James  McHenry,  Jr.,  successfully  conducted  a  farm  in  Missouri 
until  his  marriage  with  Miss  Pierce,  whereupon  he  disposed  of 
his  eastern  interests  and  crossed  the  plains  with  his  bride  in  the 
early  '50s.  For  some  months  he  mined  with  varying  success, 
later  engaging  in  the  teaming  and  livery  business  in  Modesto,  Cal., 
where  he  built  the  first  hotel  in  that  section.  Upon  the  death  of 
his  wife,  who  left  two  daughters,  Margareta,  Mrs.  Paul  Tietzen. 
of  Berkeley,  and  Almeda,  Mrs.  Davidson,  of  Santa  Maria,  he 
sold  his  business  in  Stanislaus  countv  and  removed  to  Santa  Rosa, 


HISTORY  OF  VoLo  COUNTY  305 

where  he  continue. 1  to  exert  his  efforts  as  a  progressive  and  capa- 
ble citizen,  contributing  largely  to  the  development  of  that  locality 
until  1873,  when  he  settled  in  Woodland.  Shortly  thereafter,  in 
partnership  with  Al  Eaton,  he  opened  an  up-to-date  livery  barn, 
conducting  also  many  other  public  enterprises,  including  the  sur- 
vey and  maintenance  of  a  stage  road  between  Woodland  and  Lake 
county.  Upon  the  sale  of  his  livery  interest  to  H.  C.  Duncan  he 
engaged  in  agricultural 'pursuits  near  Esparto,  Yolo  county. 

January  25,  1875,  Mr.  McHenry  married  his  second  wife, 
Mrs.  Elizabeth  (Duncan)  Keithly,  born  near  St.  Joseph,  Mo.,  and 
to  their  union  two  children  were  born:  William  Lane,  who  now 
resides  near  Esparto,  and  Ethel  Terry,  who  after  her  graduation 
from  the  San  Francisco  Business  College  became  the  wife  of 
Charles  P.  Murphy  of  that  city. 

Mr.  McHenry  was  a  man  of  literary  as  well  as  business  abil- 
ity, and  contributed  many  leading  articles  to  various  county 
papers.  A  charter  member  of  the  Odd  Fellows  Lodge  at  Capay, 
he  served  as  noble  grand  for  many  years.  He  was  a  stanch  Demo- 
crat and  for  some  years  was  supervisor  of  Stanislaus  county.  As 
an  active  member  of  the  Christian  Church,  to  which  he  lent  his 
willing  support,  he  endeavored  at  all  times  to  conduct  his  life 
according  to  the  principles  of  practical  Christianity,  his  gener- 
osity and  kindly  interest  in  the  welfare  of  his  fellow  men  having 
fully  merited  the  confidence  and  esteem  which  he  enjoyed. 

Elizabeth  Duncan  was  the  daughter  of  Charles  and  Dorcas 
(Coffman)  Duncan,  natives  of  Tennessee  and  Maryland,  respec- 
tively, and  received  her  education  in  the  public  schools  near  St. 
Joseph,  Mo.  Her  paternal  grandfather,  Joel  Duncan,  of  Scotch 
parentage,  was  also  a  native  of  Tennessee  and  settled  in  McDon- 
ough  county.  111.,  where  he  farmed  until  his  death.  His  son  Charles 
spent  his  youth  in  Illinois,  removing  later  to  Andrew  county, 
Mo.,  where  he  operated  a  farm  for  a  time.  Later  he  located  in 
Henderson  county,  HI.,  where  lie  remained  until  1864,  going  thence 
to  California,  with  his  wife  and  seven  children,  in  company  with 
twelve  families  westward  bound,  their  well-stocked  wagons  being 
drawn  by  horses.  After  five  months  of  weary  travel,  not  the 
least  of  their  troubles  having  been  the  necessity  of  frequently 
keeping  the  Indians  at  bay,  they  reached  Yolo  county,  where  Mr. 
Duncan  filed  upon  a  homestead  near  Plainfield,  actively  conduct 
ing  his  ranch  until  his  death  in  L886,  at  the  age  of  eighty  years. 
lacking  but  two  weeks.  Of  the  various  sections  in  which  Mr.  Dun- 
can had  made  his  home,  he  found  no  climate  so  agreeable  as  that 
of  California,  which  he  termed   the  land  of  sunshine  and   flowers. 

Mr.  Duncan  was  united  in  marriage  with  Dorcas  Coffman, 
who  was  born  in  Maryland  and  who  accompanied  her  parents  to 


306  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

Hancock  county,  111.  Her  father,  Jacob  Coffman,  born  in  Mary- 
land, was  a  farmer  by  occupation,  and  with  his  wife  spent  his 
last  years  in  Illinois.  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Duncan  were  blessed  with 
the  following  children:  Louisa  J.,  now  Mrs.  W.  J.  Chard,  of 
Washington ;  Mary  C,  who  became  the  wife  of  H.  H.  Hungate,  and 
who  now  resides  in  Walla  Walla,  Wash.;  Elizabeth,  Mrs.  Mc- 
Henry;  William  J.,  who  makes  his  home  in  Waitsburg,  Wash.; 
Nancy  A.,  now  Mrs.  J.  T.  McJunkin,  of  Hanford,  Cal.;  H.  C, 
who  resides  in  Fair  Oaks,  Cal.;  James  C,  of  Shasta  county;  and 
Lane,  who  prior  to  his  removal  to  Garfield  County,  Wash.,  served 
for  eight  years  as  clerk  of  Yolo  county. 

January  25,  1866,  Elizabeth  Duncan  became  the  wife  of  Wil- 
liam Keithly,  who  was  born  in  Indiana,  and  who  moved  to  Mc- 
Donough  county,  111.,  with  his  parents,  Jacob  and  Sarah  (Roberts) 
Keithly.  The  son  assisted  upon  his  father's  farm  until  1852, 
when,  with  his  brother  John,  he  crossed  the  plains  to  Yolo  county, 
Cal.,  with  the  aid  of  ox-teams.  Later  he  took  up  a  homestead 
and  engaged  in  stock  raising,  but  owing  to  continued  exposure 
under  adverse  climatic  conditions  his  health  failed  to  the  extent 
that  in  1869  he  was  forced  to  sell  his  interests.  Shortly  there- 
after he  purchased  a  ranch  of  one  thousand  and  ninety-two  acres 
in  the  Esparto  section,  conducting  his  affairs  with  great  success 
until  his  death  in  Sacramento  in  1872,  when  but  forty-five  years 
old.  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Keithly  were  the  parents  of  three  children,  as 
follows:  Frank,  who  is  a  farmer  near  Esparto;  Charles  H.,  who 
resides  in  Prince  Rupert,  Canada;  and  Hattie,  Mrs.  Mehmedoff, 
of  Esparto. 

Since  the  death  of  her  second  husband  Mrs.  McHenry  has 
divided  her  time  between  the  home  ranch  and  her  Woodland  resi- 
dence, continuing  an  active  interest  in  the  affairs  of  the  estate, 
which,  in  1909,  was  sub-divided  and  sold,  the  heirs  reserving 
forty  acres  each. 

William  Lane  McHenry  was  married  to  Rosella  Carrick, 
whose  birth  occurred  in  Yreka,  Siskiyou  county,  Cal.  They  now 
make  their  home  in  Yolo  county,  where,  in  addition  to  his  share 
of  his  father's  estate,  Mr.  McHenry  conducts  a  ten-acre  tract 
devoted  to  horticulture,  his  enterprise  and  good  management  hav- 
ing placed  him  among  the  leading  citizens  of  the  community. 

Highly  cultured,  and  of  a  generous,  sympathetic  temperament, 
Mrs.  McHenry  is  greatly  beloved  among  her  many  friends,  and 
in  addition  to  lending  practical  aid  in  the  various  auxiliaries  of 
the  Christian  Church,  in  which  she  enjoys  active  membership, 
maintains  a  deep  interest  in  the  suffrage  movement,  her  thorough 
study  of  the  question  enabling  her  to  intelligently  assist  in  that 
work. 


AA 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  31] 

REUBEN  B.  NISSEN 

In  a  region  remote  from  North  Carolina,  where  he  was  born 
July  5,  1845,  and  where  he  passed  the  uneventful  years  of  youth, 
it  was  the  destiny  of  Reuben  B.  Nissen  to  pass  the  busy  afternoon 
of  life  and  to  pass  from  a  serene  twilight  into  the  rest  of  eternity, 
lie  did  not  come  direct  from  the  Atlantic  seaboard  to  the  shores  of 
the  Pacific,  but  stopped  for  three  years  at  Knobnoster,  Johnson 
county,  Mo.,  and  thence  proceeded  westward  in  the  year  1870.  For 
eight  years  he  followed  the  carpenter's  trade  at  Elmira  and  rose 
from  day  wages  to  the  work  of  a  contractor  and  builder,  in  which 
he  met  with  fair  success,  and  he  followed  the  building  business  after 
he  located  at  Esparto.  Eventually  he  turned  to  agricultural  pur- 
suits and  became  the  owner  of  nine  hundred  and  eighty  acres  near 
Esparto,  where  he  resided  from  1878  until  his  death,  February  13, 
1910.  Prominent  among  associates,  he  was  called  upon  to  fill  the 
office  of  school  trustee  and  in  that  capacity  aided  in  the  upbuilding 
of  the  district  schools.  On  one  occasion  his  friends  selected  him  for 
the  office  of  supervisor,  but  he  refused  to  serve  in  the  position.  The 
cares  of  business  kept  him  from  returning  to  his  old  southern  home 
and  renewing  the  associations  of  boyhood,  but  a  number  of  his  rela- 
tives visited  him  in  his  western  home,  among  them  being  his  three 
brothers,  W.  M.,  a  prominent  wagon  manufacturer  of  North  ( Jarolina, 
C.  F.  and  S.  J.  Two  sisters,  two  nephews  and  two  nieces  also  came 
to  visit  him  from  North  Carolina  and  he  further  enjoyed  a  visit 
from  a  sister  living  in  Missouri,  so  that  the  ties  of  kinship  were 
maintained  with  affection   throughout   his   entire  life. 

The  marriage  of  Reuben  B.  Nissen  at  Maine  Prairie,  Solano 
county,  January  6,  1875,  united  him  with  Miss  Mary  Virginia  Wyatt, 
who  was  born  in  Grundy  county,  Mo.,  and  at  a  very  early  age  came 
across  the  plains  in  1864  with  her  parents,  James  N.  B.  and  Ann 
(Williams)  Wyatt.  Although  very  young  at  the  time,  she  recalls 
many  events  of  the  journey  with  surprising  distinctness.  When  the 
emigrants  were  in  camp  on  the  Platte  river  they  were  surprised  and 
alarmed  by  the  sudden  advent  of  a  man  on  horseback,  without  hat 
or  hoots,  his  clothing  in  rags  and  an  arrow  in  his  hack,  lie  told 
them  that  the  Indians  had  killed  his  parents  and  taken  captive  his 
wife,  a  beautiful  young  woman  with  long  hair.  Dr.  A.  YVynn.  an 
uncle  of  Mrs.  Nissen,  cut  the  arrow  out  and  made  the  man  as  com- 
fortable as  the  circumstances  permitted,  lie  was  put  on  a  wagon 
and  taken  with  the  expedition  as  far  as  Fort  Laramie,  where  he 
made  heart-rending  pleadings  that  the  party  would  remain  until  he 
recovered  so  that  he  could  come  on  to  California  with  them. 

There  were  thirty  wagons  and  one  hundred  persons  in  the 
train.     They  crossed  the  Platte  river  in  four  wagon  beds,  caulked 


312  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

and  tied  together.  Ten  men  took  hold  of  the  sides  of  the  craft. 
When  they  could  touch  bottom  they  would  shove  the  boat  along. 
When  they  could  not  touch  bottom  they  would  swing  on  the  boat 
and  let  it  float.  All  of  the  running  gear  of  the  thirty  wagons,  as 
well  as  the  one  hundred  persons  and  their  belongings  were  crossed 
in  the  wagon  beds  and  it  took  twenty-one  days  to  get  across  and 
prepared  to  move  forward.  While  camping  on  the  Platte  an  electric 
storm  arose.  The  downpour  of  hail,  with  the  vivid  lightning  and 
terrific  thunder,  frightened  the  cattle  so  that  they  ran  away  and 
the  Indians  captured  them.  Some  of  the  brave  men  of  the  expedi- 
tion followed  the  savages,  shot  them,  rescued  the  stock  and  returned 
to  camp  with  every  animal  safe.  Mrs.  Nissen  well  remembers  the 
great  rejoicing  when  the  men  and  stock  came  safely  back  to  camp. 

When  camp  was  made  a  long  distance  from  any  fort  it  was  the 
custom  for  the  emigrants  to  arrange  their  wagons  in  a  circle.  The 
stock  were  placed  within  the  circle  and  all  night  long  each  man 
would  stand  guard  at  his  wagon  with  his  gun  in  his  hand.  The  ox- 
teams  would  sometimes  give  out  from  tender  feet.  When  an  ox 
began  to  walk  lame  it  would  be  taken  out  and  a  cow  put  in  its  place, 
while  the  tired  ox  had  a  chance  to  recuperate  with  the  balance  of 
the  herd  driven  back  of  the  wagon  train.  The  churning  on  the  trip 
was  not  after  the  method  followed  in  the  Woodland  and  Winters 
creameries.  After  the  cows  had  been  milked  in  the  morning,  the 
milk  would  be  placed  in  the  churn  and  at  night,  when  camp  was 
made,  the  butter  would  be  in  round  balls  about  the  size  of  a  marble. 

During  the  long  journey  of  six  months  and  ten  days  between 
Grundy  county.  Mo.,  and  Cloverdale,  Sonoma  county,  only  one  death 
occurred.  A  small  child  was  buried  at  Fort  Laramie  on  the  4th  of 
July  and  the  accidental  presence  of  soldiers  with  their  band  of 
music  made  the  ceremony  very  impressive,  particularly  for  the  small 
children,  who  felt  sad  at  the  thought  of  leaving  their  beloved  play- 
mate in  the  lonely  little  grave  in  that  strange  land.  Few  of  the 
travelers  were  ill,  the  most  serious  trouble  being  an  epidemic  of  the 
whooping  cough.  Every  Sunday  services  were  held  with  excellent 
singing  and  earnest  preaching.  During  the  week  nights  the  young 
people  would  have  parties  and  dances,  so  that  there  was  some  en- 
joyment in  the  midst  of  the  hardships.  The  only  mirror  in  the  ex- 
pedition was  the  property  of  her  mother,  Mrs.  J.  N.  B.  Wyatt,  who 
was  accustomed  to  hang  it  out  on  the  wagon  every  Sunday  morning, 
so  that  the  men  could  come  there  to  shave.  Some  would  come  to 
look  at  their  faces  and  study  the  changes  in  their  features  since 
they  left  home.  There  was  no  silverware  in  the  party,  nor  any 
china  or  cut-glass,  but  every  woman  had  her  new  outfit  of  tin  dishes. 
The  first  night  that  the  provisions  were  placed  on  the  ground  a 
baby   (F.  M.  Wyatt  of  Winters)    started  to  creep  across  the  im- 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  313 

provised  table  in  a  hurry  and  the  rattle  that  followed  was  amusing 
for  everyone. 

Four  sons  came  to  bless  the  union  of  Reuben  B.  and  Virginia 
Nissen.  The  third  oldest,  Babe,  born  September  16,  1889,  was  taken 
from  the  home  by  death  April  6,  1891.  The  eldest  of  the  family, 
Clarence  R.,  a  stockman,  born  September  9,  1883,  married  Elsie  M. 
Taber  and  they  have  two  children,  Virginia  M.  and  Clarence  Reuben, 
Jr.  The  second  son,  Claude  S.,  born  November  12,  1886,  manages 
the  home  place,  with  the  assistance  of  the  youngest  son,  Frank  W., 
born  June  13,  1895.  These  two  brothers  have  one  hundred  and 
twenty-five  head  of  hogs  as  well  as  a  large  number  of  other  live 
stock  and  in  the  threshing  season  they  run  a  combined  harvester 
on  their  own  place,  also  doing  threshing  for  others  and  averaging 
twenty-five  acres  per  day.  The  home  farm,  "Rose  Mound,"  occu- 
pied by  the  widow  and  the  two  youngest  sons,  comprises  one  hun- 
dred and  ninety  acres,  located  in  Lamb  valley,  three  and  one-half 
miles  southwest  of  Esparto,  of  which  more  than  one-half  is  in  pas- 
ture and  in  grain.  Seventy-five  acres  are  in  apricots,  peaches, 
pears,  prunes,  almonds  and  apples,  bringing  in  a  large  annual 
revenue.  The  rest  of  the  holdings  has  been  divided  between  the 
sons.  They  are  young  men  of  energy  and  are  adding  lustre  to  an 
honored  pioneer  name. 


WILLIAM  M.  JACKSON 

Among  the  ranks  of  the  army  of  brave  men  who  established 
western  civilization,  William  M.  Jackson  deserves  an  honored 
place.  He  was  born  in  Hamilton  county,  Ohio,  in  1833,  his  par- 
ents being  Benjamin  B.  and  Polly  (Ruggles)  Jackson.  When  lie 
was  nineteen,  in  1852,  he  and  his  brothers,  Benjamin  F.  and  Bryon 
B.,  in  company  with  the  Ruggles  family,  joined  a  party  bound 
for  California,  and  slowly  but  surely  driving  their  cattle  before 
them  they  crossed  the  plains  and  entered  the  borderland  of  the 
Golden  state.  For  a  time  Mr.  Jackson  mined  in  Placer  county 
and  in  1856  he  purchased  a  ranch  of  one  hundred  and  sixty  acres 
two  miles  south  of  Woodland.  After  three  years  he  returned  easl 
by  way  of  the  Panama  route  and  remained  about  a  year,  and 
again,  in  1860,  he  made  his  way  across  the  plains  and  once  more 
took  up  farming.  In  the  meantime  he  purchased  land  adjoining 
until  he  had  four  hundred  and  eighty  acres  in  one  body,  and  here 
he  carried  on  farming  until  his  death  in  1874. 


314  HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

Mr.  Jackson's  wife  before  her  marriage  was  Kate  Cooper,  a 
native  of  Ohio.  She  died  in  Santa  Cruz  in  1903.  The  only  child 
born  of  this  marriage  was  Benjamin  Byron,  who  was  born  in 
Woodland  October  1,  1862,  and  who  became  the  stay  and  comfort 
of  his  mother  during  her  last  years.  He  has  since  successfully 
operated  the  farm,  which  now  consists  of  three  hundred  and  ninety 
acres.  The  place  is  all  under  irrigation,  having  a  ditch  from 
Cache  creek.  For  many  years  he  devoted  the  land  to  alfalfa 
and  grain  and  to  cattle  and  hog  raising,  besides  running  a  dairy, 
but  he  now  leases  it  for  beet  raising. 

Twice  married,  Benjamin  B.  Jackson's  first  wife  was  Nora 
Epperson,  a  native  of  Illinois,  who  at  her  death  left  one  daughter, 
Rowena  Fay,  now  Mrs.  Van  Norden,  of  San  Francisco.  His  .sec- 
ond wife  was  formerly  Miss  Cleopatra  Miller,  a  native  of  Auburn, 
Cal.  One  of  the  native  sons  of  Yolo  county,  Mr.  Jackson  was  edu- 
cated in  the  public  schools  here  and  later  attended  Hesperian 
College.  This  has  been  his  life-time  home,  and  by  all  he  is  re- 
garded as  a  public-spirited  and  progressive  citizen  and  a  success- 
ful farmer. 


CHARLES  FRANK  HADSALL 

The  prominent  citizen  of  Yolo  county,  Cal.,  whose  name  is 
above  is  remembered  as  a  man  and  as  an  official  of  the  highest 
character,  whose  record  is  dear  to  all  who  knew  him.  Charles 
Frank  Hadsall  was  born  April  3,  1869,  at  Wilmington,  Will  county, 
111.,  the  only  son  of  Frank  and  Mercy  Hadsall.  The  father  died 
at  Woodland,  about  1900,  the  mother  about  1890,  and  they  lie  at 
rest  in  Woodland  cemetery.  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Hadsall  came  to  Yolo 
county  in  1879,  when  their  son  was  about  ten  months  old,  and  the 
latter  was  educated  in  the  Woodland  grammar  school  and  in  the 
Woodland  Business  College.  Three  months  before  the  completion 
of  the  course  by  his  class  in  the  latter  institution  he  was  offered 
by  W.  H.  Hampton  a  position  in  the  Davis  lumber  yard.  Mr. 
Hampton  was  manager  of  the  yard,  and  under  his  able  and  careful 
instruction — for  he  took  a  real  interest  in  the  young  man — Mr. 
Hadsall  acquired  his  initial  knowledge  of  actual  business.  Here, 
as  he  had  been  at  school,  he  was  an  apt  pupil.  He  was  in  the 
employ  of  Mr.  Hampton  until  1897,  when  he  accepted  an  appoint- 
ment as  deputy  county  clerk  under  Lane  Duncan,  who  was  then 
clerk  of  Yolo  county.    Mr.  Hadsall  served  as  Mr.  Duncan's  deputy 


-<f 


HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  317 

during  the  last  two  years  of  the  hitter's  first  term,  then  was  nomi- 
nated on  the  Republican  ticket  for  county  auditor  and  was  elected 
and  served  four  years  in  that  office.  About  the  time  of  the  ex- 
piration of  his  term  as  auditor  he  was  nominated  as  county  clerk, 
to  succeed  Mr.  Duncan,  and  was  elected.  In  1906  he  was  re- 
elected to  the  same  office,  and  would  have  completed  his  second 
term  about  two  weeks  after  the  date  of  his  death.  He  had  decided 
to  retire  from  official  life  in  order  to  devote  his  time  entirely  to 
his  farm.  As  a  citizen  he  had  an  impelling  sense  of  respect  for 
every  obligation,  and  in  all  his  relations  with  his  fellow  men  he 
was  just  even  to  generosity  and  tolerant  of  the  views  of  others. 
As  public  official  lie  was  efficient,  honest  and  painstaking.  There  was 
no  duty  that  he  did  not  discharge  with  the  utmost  fidelity.  He  was 
not  affiliated  with  any  church,  but  was  an  attendant  upon  the  services 
of  the  Methodist  Episcopal  Church  South,  of  Woodland. 

There  was  another,  and  the  most  interesting,  side  to  the  life  of 
Mr.  Hadsall — the  domestic  side.  On  November  24,  1892,  he  was  mar- 
ried in  Davis  to  Miss  Nettie  Viola  Eowe,  by  the  Eev.  E.  F.  Allen. 
As  a  husband  and  father  he  was  loving  and  devoted.  He  was  sur- 
vived by  a  widow  and  four  daughters — Carrie  Viola,  Mildred 
Rowena,  Bernice  Carmen  and  Charlotte  Nettie — who  ranged  in  age 
from  four  to  sixteen  years.  His  sister,  Mrs.  Frank  G.  Blaisdell,  lives 
in  Los  Angeles.  Another  sister,  Mrs.  Carrie  O'Connell,  is  buried 
in  the  Woodland  cemetery.  His  aunt,  Mrs.  Abiah  Day,  and  his 
cousin,  Russell  T.  Day,  live  at  Berkeley.  His  aunt,  Mrs.  Sarah 
Russell,  and  two  of  his  cousins,  Frank  Russell  and  Mary  Sweet, 
have  their  homes  in  Auburn.  He  passed  away  December  14,  1910, 
at  his  residence,  No.  140  First  street,  Woodland. 

Besides  performing  his  duties  as  county  clerk  and  clerk  of  the 
board  of  supervisors,  Mr.  Hadsall  devoted  all  his  spare  time  for 
some  years  to  the  development  of  a  farm  in  the  Hoppin  tract,  near 
Yolo,  which  he  bought  late  in  his  life.  He  was  an  active  member  of 
Woodland  Lodge  No.  Ill,  I.  0.  O.  F.,  and  of  Court  Yolo  No.  1313, 
I.  0.  F.  Mrs.  Hadsall  was  born  near  Folsom,  Sacramento  county,  a 
daughter  of  Jesse  G.  Rowe,  a  native  of  New  Jersey,  who  came  to 
California  in  1867,  and  after  freighting  for  a  time  at  Sacramento 
farmed  at  Davis,  where  he  is  still  living.  His  wife,  who  was  Miss 
Susan  Armstrong  of  Des  Moines,  Iowa,  died  at  Davis,  January  27, 
1897.  Mrs.  Hadsall,  maintaining  her  residence  at  the  family  home 
in  Woodland,  superintends  the  conduct  of  her  farm  of  ninety  acres, 
fifty-seven  in  alfalfa  and  the  remainder  devoted  to  grain  and  dairy- 
ing. An  estimable  woman  of  many  splendid  traits  of  character, 
liberal  and  enterprising,  she  is  a  member  of  the  Woodland  Metho- 
dist Episcopal  Church  South  and  affiliates  with  Woodland  Parlor 
No.  90,  N.  D.  G.  W.,  and  with  Woodland  Lodge,  L.  O.  T.  M. 


318  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

HIRAM  HENIGAN 

The  present  efficient  recorder  of  Yolo  county,  Cal.,  Hiram 
Henigan,  of  Woodland,  was  born  near  Massena,  St.  Lawrence 
county,  N.  Y.,  June  20,  1876,  and  when  but  seven  years  old  accom- 
panied his  parents,  Eli  and  Eliza  (Miller)  Henigan,  to  California. 
The  family  located  in  Woodland,  where  the  father  died  four  years 
later.  The  mother  reared  the  children,  fitting  them  as  well  as 
she  was  able  for  the  duties  and  responsibilities  of  the  best  citi- 
zenship, and  lived  in  the  old  home  until  her  death,  which  occurred 
March    7,    1911. 

It  was  in  the  schools  of  Woodland  that  Mr.  Henigan  gained 
his  education.  After  he  was  graduated  from  the  high  school  he 
engaged  in  draying  and  thus  was  busied  several  years',  working 
hard  and  learning  a  good  deal  about  the  city,  its  business  men 
and  its  enterprises  and  prospects.  He  then  entered  the  employ 
of  Chris  Sieber  &  Company,  hardware  merchants,  with  whom  he 
remained  four  years,  still  farther  broadening  his  business  vision. 
In  August,  1910,  he  was  nominated  on  the  Republican  ticket  for 
recorder  of  Yolo  county,  to  which  office  he  was  elected  in  the  fol- 
lowing November  and  the  duties  of  which  he  assumed  January  2, 
1911.  He  has  become  popular  as  an  official  and  his  conduct  of  the 
business  to  which  he  was  chosen  has  given  general  satisfaction 
to  citizens  of  all  classes  and  of  every  shade  of  political  belief. 

In  1900  Mr.  Henigan  married  Miss  Lottie  Boots,  whose  father, 
W.  A.  Boots,  came  to  Woodland  among  the  earliest  settlers.  She 
has  borne  Mr.  Henigan  three  children:  Lawrence,  Wallace  and 
Evelyn.  Mr.  Henigan  is  a  member  of  the  Foresters  of  America; 
is  a  member  of  Woodland  Lodge  No.  Ill,  I.  0.  O.  F.,  of  which  he 
is  past  noble  grand,  and  is  identified  also  with  Encampment  No. 
79  and  is  its  past  chief  patriarch.  Frank  and  straightforward  in 
all  his  dealings  and  associations  with  men,  he  is  well  liked  and 
much  appreciated,  and  between  him  and  the  people  whom  he  con- 
scientiously serves  there  exists  a  strong  bond  of  friendship. 


ALBERT  JOHNSON  HANNUM 

One  of  the  best  known  and  most  successful  cattle  dealers  in 
Yolo  county,  and  an  enterprising  citizen  as  well,  is  Albert  J.  Han- 
num,  of  Woodland,  whose  birth  occurred  near  Cacheville,  Yolo 
county,  March  3,  1871.     His  parents  were  Warren  W.  and  Pris- 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  32] 

cilia  (Hill)  Hannum.  The  father  was  a  school  teacher  in  Moni- 
teau county,  Mo.,  until  the  gold  excitement,  when,  in  1850,  he 
came  west  with  ox-teams  and  experienced  the  usual  features  of 
that  long  and  wearisome  journey  across  the  plains.  Settling  in 
Placer  county,  he  mined  for  a  time,  and  also  served  ably  one  term 
as  sheriff  of  that  county,  going  thence  to  Yolo  county,  where  he 
secured  a  grant  of  land  near  Woodland.  In  1854,  however,  he 
purchased  a  farm  three  miles  north  of  Cacheville,  where  he  con- 
ducted a  general  farming  business  until  his  death  in  1885.  He 
was  a  charter  member  of  Cacheville  Lodge,  F.  &  A.  M.,  and  in 
religion  was  a  member  of  the  Christian  Church.  His  first  wife, 
formerly  Eunice  Mattier,  left  three  children  at  her  death,  as 
follows:  Charles  H.,  an  immigration  officer  at  Sumas,  Wash.; 
Mattie,  Mrs.  Mitchum,  of  Harrington,  Wash. ;  and  James  A.,  who 
went  to  South  Africa  to  serve  in  the  Boer  war,  this  being  the  last 
that  was  heard  from  him.  In  1870  Mr.  Hannum  married  Miss 
Priscilla  Hill,  a  native  of  Missouri,  and  the  eldest  of  their  three 
children  is  Albert  J.,  the  others  being  Warren  H.,  of  Sebastopol, 
and  William  C,  of  Seattle,  Wash. 

Albert  J.  Hannum  spent  his  boyhood  on  his  father's  ranch, 
and  received  his  early  education  in  the  schools  of  that  vicinity, 
completing  it  with  a  course  at  Hesperian  College,  Woodland.  He 
manifested  keen  interest  in  every  duty  pertaining  to  the  farm, 
but  more  particularly  cattle  raising,  which  vocation  he  has  since 
followed.  In  1893,  when  twenty-three  years  old,  he  entered  the 
cattle  business  in  Woodland  and  from  the  beginning  of  his  ven- 
ture his  success  was  assured.  Mr.  Hannum  deals  in  Yolo  county 
and  Sacramento  valley  cattle,  shipping  to  San  Francisco  by  car- 
loads. He  is  also  engaged  in  general  farming  on  the  old  Taylor 
place,  two  miles  north  of  Woodland.  He  is  aggressive  and  pros- 
perous, and  though  very  busy  in  his  chosen  work  is  ever  on  the 
alert  to  assist  his  home  county  in  every  way  within  his  power. 
In  1909  he  married  Miss  Forella  Andrus,  who  was  bom  in  Den- 
ver, Colo.,  and  enjoys  with  her  husband  the  esteem  of  their  numer- 
ous  friends. 


DAVID  H.  LONG 

To  devote  the  years  of  maturity  to  agricultural  pursuits  in  the 
locality  familiar  to  his  earliest  recollections  and  to  achieve  a  grati- 
fying degree  of  success  through  his  own  painstaking  efforts — such 
lias  been  the  experience  of  David  H.  Long,  and  such  the  results 


322  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

of  his  sagacious  labors.  The  family  of  which  he  is  a  member  has 
been  represented  in  the  community  for  little  less  than  one-half 
century  and  its  members  of  the  earlier  generation  as  well  as  the 
present  have  been  helpful  in  the  development  of  the  land,  con- 
tributing their  quota  toward  the  scientific  cultivation  of  the  soil 
and  proving  themselves  to  be  citizens  of  the  highest  type.  Men- 
tion of  the  family  appears  elsewhere  in  the  sketch  of  James 
Thomas  Long,  a  pioneer  rancher  of  this  district  and  an  older 
brother  of  the  gentleman  above  named. 

The  well-improved  farm  of  eighty  acres  owned  and  occupied 
by  David  H.  Long  adjoins  the  old  homestead  where  he  was  born 
December  5,  1868,  and  where  he  learned  the  rudiments  of  general 
farming,  as  well  as  the  care  of  stock  and  many  other  details  of 
agriculture.  Assisting  at  home  during  the  vacations,  he  attended 
the  public  schools  at  other  times  and  after  he  had  completed  the 
studies  of  these  institutions  he  spent  one  year  at  Pacific  Methodist 
College  at  Santa  Rosa.  On  his  return  to  the  old  homestead  he 
became  an  active  assistant  in  the  tilling  of  the  soil.  September 
16,  1891,  he  was  united  in  marriage  with  Miss  Clara  L.  Morgan, 
who  was  born  on  her  father's  homestead  near  Blacks,  Y"olo  county. 
Losing  her  mother  by  death  in  her  childhood  years,  she  was  taken 
to  Oregon  by  an  aunt  and  there  received  her  education,  as  well  as 
a  practical  training  in  housewifely  duties.  She  was  the  daughter 
of  Moses  W.  and  Mary  A.  (Neal)  Morgan,  natives  of  Trumbull 
county,  ( )hio.  The  father  came  to  California  in  1853  by  way  of 
Panama  with  his  brother,  Emory  B.  Morgan,  who  taught  the  first 
school  in  Cacheville.  Mrs.  Long's  grandfather,  Ezra  Morgan, 
came  to  California  in  1851  and  took  up  land  at  Cacheville.  In 
1867  her  father  purchased  the  farm  on  which  she  is  now  living 
and  where  he  and  his  wife  died.  Since  their  marriage  the  young 
couple  have  lived  on  the  Morgan  ranch,  of  which  they  now  own 
eighty  acres.  In  addition  Mr.  Long  rents  four  hundred  acres, 
which  he  has  under  cultivation  principally  to  wheat,  barley  and 
alfalfa.  On  his  home  place  he  has  erected  a  neat  farm  house,  a 
substantial  barn  and  other  necessary  buildings.  Fences  have  been 
constructed  for  the  division  of  the  fields  and  the  pasturage  of  the 
stock.  Many  shade  trees  have  been  planted,  and  these  add  much 
to  the  attractive  appearance  of  the  grounds.  All  in  all,  the  prop- 
erty bespeaks  the  care  and  cultivation  of  an  energetic  and  capable 
farmer,  and  the  impression  thus  given  is  deepened  by  a  study  of 
the  well-kept  cattle,  hogs,  sheep  and  horses.  The  pleasant  home 
is  brightened  by  the  presence  of  five  children,  Mary  Louise,  Luella, 
David  Harold,  Margaret  and  Charles  Sidney,  all  of  whom  are 
being  given  the  best  advantages  within  the  means  of  the  parents. 
Especially  has  it  been  the  aim  of  Mr.  Long  to  give  his  children 


II1STOKV  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  325 

a  good  education  and  this  interest  in  their  intellectual  advance- 
ment and  in  the  welfare  of  other  children  in  the  neighborhood 
led  him  to  accept  the  office  of  school  director,  in  which  capacity 
he  served  with  efficiency.  In  addition  he  now  fills  the  office  of 
district  clerk.  Other  offices  he  refuses  to  hold,  for  his  tastes  do 
not  incline  him  toward  politics  and,  indeed,  he  takes  no  part  in 
local  elections  aside  from  supporting  the  candidates  of  the  Demo- 
cratic party.  With  his  family  he  attends  the  Methodist  Episcopal 
Church  at  Blacks  and  contributes  to  its  support  and  to  its  mis- 
sionarv   movements. 


JOHN  K.  SCHUEELE 

In  the  loss  of  Mr.  Schuerle,  a  successful  and  highly  respected 
Yolo  county  agriculturist,  who  passed  away  January  15,  1901, 
Woodland  relinquished  one  of  her  most  able  citizens,  whose  gen- 
erous aid  in  the  development  of  that  locality  proved  both  well  di- 
rected and  permanent  and  clearly  attested  his  foresight  and  intelli- 
gent public  interest. 

A  native  of  Germany,  his  birth  having  occurred  in  Horn, 
Gmund,  Wurtemberg,  June  1,  1832,  Mr.  Schuerle  was  the  son  of 
Bernhard  and  Veronica  (Klatzbiger)  Schuerle,  and  was  educated  in 
the  public  schools,  subsequently  taking  a  course  in  the  Wurtemberg 
Agricultural  College.  His  father,  the  son  of  Christof  and  Veronica 
(Myer)  Schuerle,  farmers  in  Horn,  spent  his  boyhood  in  that  vicin- 
ity and  for  many  years  held  the  position  of  game  warden  and  head 
forester  in  the  service  of  Count  Raroldingen  of  Horn,  retaining  his 
appointment  until  his  death  at  the  ai>e  of  sixty  years. 

In  1854  Mr.  Schuerle  came  to  America,  settling  in  Cincinnati. 
Ohio,  where  he  was  employed  in  a  lumber  yard,  also  becoming  the 
owner  of  valuable  real  estate  in  that  city.  In  1860,  upon  deciding 
to  emigrate  to  the  west,  he  sold  his  interests  and  took  passage  via 
Panama,  arriving  in  Woodland,  Cai.  He  at  once  identified  himself 
with  the  little  village,  which  at  that  time  boasted  but  one  dwelling 
and  a  blacksmith's  shop.  Associated  with  Anton  Miller,  a  friend 
from  Cincinnati,  Ohio,  he  established  a  brewery  which  proved  most 
successful.  Disposing  of  his  interests  in  1881,  he  bought  a  quarter- 
section  adjacent  to  the  rapidly  growing  town  in  which  he  had  casl 
his  Fortunes,  and  by  further  wise  purchases  acquired  a  total  of  two 
hundred  and  forty  acres,  upon  which  he  raised  barley,  grapes  and 
various  grains,  profitably  conducting  his  farm  until  his  death,  when 


326  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

it  became  known  that  to  his  sister,  Mrs.  Bertha  "Weber,  who  for 
twenty-five  years  had  managed  the  affairs  of  his  household,  he  had 
bequeathed  his  entire  estate. 

Mr.  Schuerle  was  a  stanch  Democrat,  prompt  to  lend  his  sup- 
port to  his  party,  and  as  a  member  of  Woodland's  first  board  of 
trustees,  also  a  member  of  the  board  of  supervisors  during  a  period 
of  eight  years,  thoroughly  demonstrated  his  executive  ability  and 
wise  judgment.  He  was  a  man  of  highest  principles,  and,  in  the 
opinion  of  his  many  friends  and  associates,  no  citizen  received  more 
deservedly  the  sincere  and  unanimous  regret  manifested  by  his 
large  circle  of  acquaintances  upon  his  withdrawal  from  their  midst. 


JACOB  MOSBACHEE 

One  of  the  most  courageous  pioneers  of  the  west  was  Mr. 
Mosbacher,  who  passed  away  near  Madison  in  1903,  survived  by 
his  four  daughters  and  his  wife.  The  latter  was  formerly  Mrs. 
Mary  Cooper,  whose  birth  occurred  in  Ireland  and  who  died  at 
the  old  home  November  23,  1904.  Mr.  Mosbacher  was  born  August 
22,  1820,  in  Bavaria,  Germany,  where  he  received  his  education, 
immigrating  in  1842  to  Miami  county,  Ohio,  where  he  resided 
eight  years.  In  1850  he  came  to  San  Francisco  via  Panama,  arriv- 
ing at  his  destination  with  no  capital  save  his  own  determination, 
which  later  proved  fully  adequate  to  meet  the  trials  which  ensued. 
Stopping  for  a  short  time  at  Dutch  Flat,  Mr.  Mosbacher  con- 
tinued his  way  to  Hangtown,  where  he  was  a  prospector  and  over- 
seer in  mines  for  the  succeeding  eight  years.  With  his  earnings 
of  $2,000  he  settled  in  1858  in  Yolo  county,  where  he  filed  on  a 
homestead  of  one  hundred  and  sixty  acres,  two  and  one-half  miles 
south  of  Madison,  happy  in  the  knowledge  that  the  hardships 
which  he  had  endured  as  a  miner  were  gone  forever.  Later  lie 
purchased  a  quarter  section  in  Napa  valley,  also  a  similar  tract 
adjoining  his  homestead,  and  still  later  added  to  his  holdings  one 
hundred  and  eighty-four  acres  near  Woodland,  the  larger  por- 
tion of  which  is  fine  bottom  land,  thus  at  the  time  of  his  death 
owning  five  hundred  acres  of  fine  land. 

To  the  union  of  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Mosbacher  five  children  were 
horn:  John,  deceased;  Eva,  Mrs.  Mulcahy,  who  resides  in  San 
Francisco;  Margaret,  now  the  wife  of  H.  T.  Lynch  of  San  Fran- 
cisco, and  a  graduate  of  Holy  Rosary  Academy;  Rose,  Mrs.  Harry 
Han,  of  Madison;  and  Susie,  who  was  educated  at  Holy  Rosary 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  327 

Academy  and  is  now  Sister  M.  J.  Alenie  of  the  Sisters  of  the 
Holy  Cross,  residing  at  the  convent  at  Fresno. 

Mr.  Mosbacher  was  a  Republican,  intelligently  interested  in 
political  issues,  and  he  endeavored  at  all  times  to  exercise  his 
rights  as  a  progressive  and  broad-minded  citizen,  his  unquestioned 
business  ability  and  genial  temperament  having  placed  him  among 
the  most  successful  and  popular  men  of  the  county. 

Harry  Han,  to  whom  Rose  Mosbacher  was  united  in  marriage 
September  5,  1905,  is  a  native  of  Deedsville,  Ind.,  and  for  the 
past  sixteen  years  has  been  a  resident  of  Yolo  county,  where  he 
is  engaged  in  farming  and  stock  raising.  Mrs.  Han  received  from 
her  father  one  hundred  and  sixty  acres  of  land,  a  part  of  the  old 
homestead,  two  and  a  half  miles  south  of  Madison,  and  here  she 
and  her  husband  make  their  home.  An  advocate  of  Republican 
principles,  which  he  is  prompt  to  support,  Mr.  Han  is  well  known 
as  a  citizen  of  the  highest  worth,  always  among  the  first  to  aid 
in  public  enterprises  of  merit.  His  wife,  who  maintains  active 
membership  in  the  Madison  Catholic  Church,  lends  practical  aid 
in  the  charitable  work  carried  on  by  that  institution  and  is  known 
as  a  woman  of  rare  sympathies  and  kindly  personality. 


OTIS  0.  FLOWERS 

Long  identification  with  the  wine  industry  has  enabled  Mr. 
Flowers  to  acquire  an  experience  which,  coupled  with  his  keenness 
of  observation  and  acute  perceptive  qualities,  gives  him  a  knowl- 
edge of  his  specialty  equalled  by  few  men  of  the  west.  It  was  his 
recognized  familiarity  witli  the  work  and  judicious  energy  in  its 
prosecution  that  brought  him  the  enviable  offer  of  a  position  as 
superintendent  of  the  Yolo  winery  for  the  California  Wine  Asso 
ciation,  a  responsible  post  occupied  by  him  for  a  number  of  years. 
Prior  to  his  incumbency  of  this  office  he  had  a  varied  experience 
that  gave  him  a  thorough  knowledge  of  the  business  as  conducted 
in  different  large  wineries  of  the  state.  In  each  position  lie  gave 
of  his  original  ideas,  his  intelligent  study  and  his  tireless  energy 
to  the  upbuilding  of  the  business,  thereby  rendering  possible  the 
attainment  of  results  impossible  under  less  intense  methods  and 
less  devoted  application. 

A  consideration  of  the  life  and  lineage  of  Mr.  Flowers  shows 
that  he  belongs  to  an  old,  earnest  family  whose  representatives 
were  helpful  in  the  early  development  of  our  country.     His  parents. 


328  HTKTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

William  A.  and  Louisa  (Wiggins)  Flowers,  were  natives,  respec- 
tively, of  Madison  county,  111.,  and  Pickaway  county,  Ohio,  and  his 
maternal  grandfather,  Thomas  Wiggins,  for  years  held  a  place  among 
the  most  influential  men  of  the  latter  locality.  As  early  as  1859, 
when  the  Pike's  Peak  gold  excitement  occurred,  William  A.  Flowers 
crossed  the  plains  from  Illinois  to  Colorado  with  a  large  company 
of  Argonauts,  but  he  failed  to  find  the  fortune  he  had  anticipated, 
so  took  up  any  occupation  that  offered  an  honorable  living.  Dur- 
ing the  Civil  war  he  served  as  a  government  teamster  and  crossed 
the  plains  many  times  with  supplies  for  the  troops.  Upon  receiving 
a  discharge  at  the  close  of  the  war  he  went  to  Ohio  and  settled  on  a 
farm  in  Pickaway  county.  There  he  married  Miss  Wiggins,  previ- 
ously mentioned.  In  the  same  locality  eight  children  were  born, 
all  but  two  of  whom  still  survive.  The  family  removed  to  Mis- 
souri in  1891  and  settled  on  a  farm  near  Carthage,  where  he  and 
his  wife  still  make  their  home. 

During  the  residence  of  the  family  near  Circleville,  Ohio,  on 
a  farm  located  on  what  was  known  as  the  Pickaway  plains,  Otis 
0.  Flowers  was  born  August  8,  1880.  A  peculiar  coincidence  about 
his  birth  anniversary  is  that  in  1888  he  was  eight  years  of  age  on 
the  eighth  day  of  the  eighth  month.  Very  few  persons,  even  with 
the  most  exhaustive  study  of  their  anniversaries,  would  be  able 
to  duplicate  such  a  similitude  of  dates.  With  the  other  chil- 
dren, among  whom  he  was  third  youngest,  he  accompanied  the 
parents  to  Missouri  in  1891  and  aided  in  making  productive  a 
large  farm  near  Carthage.  At  the  same  time  he  did  not  neglect 
his  studies.  In  1899  he  was  graduated  from  the  Carthage  Col- 
legiate Institute.  His  first  business  experience  was  gained  while 
working  as  a  bookkeeper  in  a  large  paint  concern.  During  the 
spring  of  1901  he  came  to  California  and  secured  a  position  as 
foreman  on  the  ranch  of  the  Occidental  Land  Company  near 
Fresno.  The  following  year  found  him  learning  the  business  of 
wine-making  at  the  Scandinavian  winery  of  the  California  Wine 
Association,  which  later  transferred  him  to  the  Walitoke  winery 
on  the  Great  Western  vineyards  near  Reedley,  Fresno  county. 
After  a  few  months  there  he  was  appointed  winemaker  at  the 
Fresno  winery,  where  he  worked  for  one  season.  Another  season 
was  spent  at  Egger's  vineyard  and  from  there  in  1906  he  was 
transferred  to  Woodland  as  superintendent  of  the  Yolo  winery, 
just  purchased  from  Eisman  &  Co.  by  the  larger  organization. 

As  general  superintendent  of  the  winery  Mr.  Flowers  main- 
tains the  excellent  reputation  established  by  this  concern  during 
the  thirty  years  of  its  existence.  Every  modern  improvement 
has  been  introduced  for  the  benefit  of  the  plant.  Especial  atten- 
tion is  given  to  producing  a  wine  of  superior  quality.     The  quan- 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  331 

tity,  however,  is  uot  neglected,  as  may  be  understood  from  the 
statement  that  two  hundred  thousand  gallons  are  manufactured 
in  one  season.  To  secure  so  large  an  output  it  is  necessary  to 
buy  enormous  quantities  of  grapes,  and  these  are  purchased  from 
the  vineyardists  of  Yolo,  Colusa  and  Sutter  counties.  By  means 
of  a  switch  extending  into  the  winery  the  task  of  unloading  the 
grapes  is  not  difficult,  nor  is  it  an  arduous  task  to  load  the  im- 
mense output  for  shipment.  The  superintendent  gives  his  atten- 
tion closely  to  the  winery  and  takes  no  part  in  politics  aside  from 
voting  the  Republican  ticket,  nor  has  he  any  important  fraternal 
associations  other  than  membership  with  the  Eagles  and  the 
Moose. 


WALTER   G.   READ 

Of  all  the  pioneers  of  Yolo  county,  none  gave  a  larger  share 
of  interest  and  assistance  toward  its  progress  than  did  Walter  G. 
Read,  who  died  while  on  a  trip  to  Freehold,  N.  J.,  April  17,  1907. 
He  was  born  in  Fall  River,  Mass.,  February  21,  1854,  and  was  a 
member  of  a  prominent  Massachusetts  family,  his  grandfather,  the 
Hon.  Benjamin  Read,  having  been  a  representative  in  the  legisla- 
ture of  that  state.  His  father,  Francis  B.  Read,  was  a  farmer  and 
merchant  of  Fall  River,  but  in  1854  took  his  family  to  Carlyle, 
Clinton  county,  111.,  where  they  lived  until  1872,  thence  immigrating 
to  California  and  settling  in  Colusa  county  on  the  site  where  the 
town  of  Arbuckle  now  stands.  Two  years  later  Mr.  Read  pur- 
chased a  ranch  live  miles  northwest  of  Colusa  and  engaged  in 
general  farming,  moving  in  1880  to  Bear  Valley,  where  he  resided 
six  years.  He  then  removed  to  Ellensburg,  Wash.,  and  there  he 
passed  away  when  in  his  seventy-second  year.  He  was  survived 
by  six  of  his  eight  children,  and  his  wife,  who  afterwards  died  in 
Colusa  in  October,  1906.  She  was  formerly  Angeline  Grinnell,  a 
descendant  of  an  old  Massachusetts  family,  and  was  born  in  Little 
Compton,  R.  I. 

Walter  G.  Read  was  educated  in  the  public  schools  of  Carlyle, 
111.,  coming  in  1872  to  California  with  bis  parents.  Shortly  after 
his  arrival  in  the  west  he  entered  lleald's  Business  College  in 
San  Francisco,  and  upon  graduating  returned  home,  where  he 
assisted  his  father  on  the  ranch,  later  establishing  a  farm  of  his 
own  and  raising  grain  on  the  Sacramento  river  with  great  suc- 
cess   for    several    years.      In    1880    he    accepted    an    opportunity    to 


332  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

enter  a  new  field  and  became  a  salesman  in  the  employ  of  Walter 
A.  Wood,  the  manufacturer  of  harvesters  and  farming  machinery. 
His  territory  was  extensive,  covering  the  states  north  from  Texas 
to  Canada,  and  his  success  was  immediate.  His  knowledge  of 
machinery  enabled  him  to  give  valuable  suggestions  to  the  Wood 
Company,  which  lost  no  time  in  incorporating  his  hints  in  their 
new  models.  After  nine  years  of  this  work  Mr.  Read  traveled 
about  a  year  on  the  western  coast  in  the  interests  of  the  Wood 
Company,  and  in  1891  left  the  field.  He  then  secured  a  farm  near 
his  father's  place  and  set  out  an  almond  orchard.  Later  he  in- 
vented and  patented  an  almond  huller  which  he  successfully  mar- 
keted, since  it  met  a  long-felt  want.  This  was  the  beginning  of  a 
series  of  practical  inventions  which  Mr.  Read  brought  to  fruition 
and  which  he  manufactured  on  his  place  until  his  removal  to  Davis, 
where  he  erected  a  modern  shop  to  meet  the  rapid  increase  of  busi- 
ness. One  of  his  principal  inventions  is  the  Read  portable  and 
automatic  hay  derrick  for  stacking  hay;  another,  a  folding  trestle 
much  appreciated  by  carpenters  and  paper-hangers.  In  1901  Mr. 
Read  established  a  mill  for  the  preparation  of  almonds  for  the 
market.  This  plant  is  two  stories  high,  80x120,  and  has  a  capacity 
of  five  hundred  tons  of  almonds.  Here  is  accomplished  every  stage 
of  the  work  of  preparing  the  almonds  for  commercial  use.  He  also 
had  in  his  mill  a  grain  cleaner  and  steam  barley  roller.  Mr.  Read 
also  invented  the  Read  apricot  pit-cracker  and  upon  its  comple- 
tion operated  it  in  various  towns,  including  Fresno,  Davis  and 
Los  Angeles,  where  it  was  greeted  with  approbation  by  those 
engaged  in  the  almond  industry.  Mr.  Read  will  also  be  remem- 
bered as  having  successfully  grafted  the  English  walnut  on  the 
black  walnut  tree,  the  experiment  occurring  in  Sacramento  valley, 
many  vain  attempts  to  that  end  having  been  made  prior  to  his 
efforts. 

Mr.  Read's  assistance  in  securing  water  rights  for  the  Uni- 
versity Farm  at  Davis  was  deeply  appreciated  by  those  interested 
in  the  institution.  He  spared  no  pains  to  aid  in  the  upbuilding  of 
Davis  and  community  and  enjoyed  a  large  circle  of  friends  through- 
out the  state.  He  was  a  Republican  in  politics  and  was  a  Mason, 
an  Odd  Fellow  and  a  Modern  Woodman.  Both  he  and  his  wife 
were  actively  associated  with  the  Presbyterian  Church  of  Davis, 
and  since  his  death  Mrs.  Read  has  faithfully  carried  on  the  interests 
of  her  husband.  Upon  the  destruction  by  fire  of  the  Read  ware- 
house in  Davis,  she  at  once  erected  a  corrugated  iron  structure  to 
take  its  place,  a  rolling  mill  being  added  to  the  new  building.  Here 
also  apricot  pits  were  extracted,  grain  stored  and  barley  rolled. 
However,  in  the  fall  of  1911  the  warehouse  where  the  pitcrackers 
were  stored  was  burned  and  the  two  machines  were  lost. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  333 

Formerly  Mrs.  Read  was  Mrs.  Jennie  (Dmmniond)  Lillard, 
born  near  Davis,  and  she  has  one  child,  Lewis  Craig  Lillard.  She 
received  her  early  education  in  the  public  schools  and  afterward 
she  graduated  from  Snell  Seminary  in  Oakland.  She  is  an  active 
member  of  the  Rebekahs  and  the  Eastern  Star  and  is  one  of  the 
most  popular  and  progressive  women  in  the  community. 


HON.  DAVID  N.  HERSHEY 

During  the  half  century  with  which  he  was  identified  with  the 
history  of  Y"olo  county  Mr.  Hershey  held  an  influential  position  as  a 
farmer,  cattle-raiser,  land-owner,  banker  and  public  official,  his  ver- 
satile talents  enabling  him  to  successfully  carry  forward  interests  of 
a  widely  different  nature.  By  virtue  of  his  recognized  ability  he 
was  called  from  the  quiet  life  of  the  agriculturist  into  the  busy 
career  of  a  man  of  public  affairs;  and,  as  he  had  been  progressive 
and  prosperous  in  the  one  calling,  so  he  proved  himself  equal  to 
every  responsibility  awaiting  him  in  the  field  of  finance,  in  the  man- 
agement of  large  properties  and  in  the  service  of  the  people. 

The  genealogy  of  the  Hershey  family  is  traced  to  the  ancestral 
home  on  the  banks  of  the  Rhine  in  Germany.  The  first  of  the  name 
in  America  was  a  preacher  in  the  United  Brethren  Church  and  after 
crossing  the  ocean  assisted  in  establishing  that  denomination  in 
Pennsylvania.  David  Hershey,  Sr.,  who  was  the  son  of  this  pioneer 
minister,  was  born  in  Dauphin  county,  Pa.,  one  mile  from  Harris 
burg,  and  in  early  manhood  married  Christiana  Rohrer,  who  was 
born,  of  German  ancestry,  on  a  farm  through  which  ran  the  state 
line  of  Pennsylvania  and  Maryland.  After  their  marriage  they  set- 
tled in  Maryland  and  their  son,  David  N.,  was  born  April  13,  L818, 
during  their  residence  in  Washington  county,  four  miles  from  ITag- 
erstown.  When  he  was  six  years  of  age  his  parents  removed  to 
Montgomery  county,  eighteen  miles  west  of  Rockville,  near  the  line 
of  the  District  of  Columbia,  and  there  he  attended  school  and  grew 
to  manhood.  In  company  with  a  brother-in-law  he  removed  to  Mi- 
sour]  in  1841,  settling  in  Howard  county.  A  year  later  lie  rented 
land  and  began  to  raise  tobacco,  Which  was  a  new  industry  in  Hint 
region.  After  curing  bis  first  crop  be  sold  seven  hogsheads  of  (lie 
dried  leaves  to  Dr.  Oder,  who  found  a  ready  market  for  the  product 
in  Europe.  Encouraged  by  lliis  success,  in  1844  the  doctor  bought 
an  interest  in  the  business  and  they  raised  tobacco  on  an  extensive 
scale,  making  large  shipments  to  Europe.    After  a  series  of  success 


334  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

ful  shipments,  reverses  came  to  them,  and  the  doctor  discontinued 
his  interests,  leaving  Mr.  Hershey  alone.  Forced  to  find  a  new  mar- 
ket, the  latter  embarked  in  the  manufacture  of  cigars,  some  of  which 
he  sold  to  traders,  and  the  balance  in  the  then  small  town  of  St. 
Louis. 

Having  decided  to  seek  a  new  location,  Mr.  Hershey  made  a 
long  prospecting  tour  through  Texas  with  a  view  to  locating,  but 
not  finding  a  satisfactory  opening,  in  1850  he  returned  to  Maryland 
and  the  next  year  went  back  to  Missouri.  For  some  time  he  worked 
with  Colonel  Floumoy  in  Linn  county.  In  May  of  1853,  in  company 
with  William  S.  Flournoy,  be  left  Missouri  with  a  drove  of  one  hun- 
dred head  of  cattle  and  proceeded  across  the  plains  and  via  the  Car- 
son route  to  California.  More  than  once  during  the  trip  they  were 
threatened  by  hostile  Indians,  but  fortunately  escaped  a  direct  at- 
tack. In  October  they  arrived  in  Amador  county  and  from  there 
came  to  Yolo  county.  Soon  afterward  they  bought  land  that  is  still 
owned  by  the  family.  As  his  interests  enlarged  Mr.  Hershey  became 
president  and  a  stockholder  in  the  Farmers  &  Merchants  Bank 
of  Woodland,  the  Bank  of  Yolo  County  and  the  Grangers  Bank  of 
San  Francisco;  also  owned  an  interest  in  the  original  Seventy-six 
canal  in  Fresno  and  Tulare  counties,  together  with  a  similar  interest 
in  nineteen  thousand  acres  of  land  adjoining  the  canal,  all  of  which 
was  subsequently  sold  to  the  Alta  Irrigation  Company. 

Had  Mr.  Hershey  been  willing  to  hold  public  office,  doubtless  he 
would  have  been  a  constant  incumbent  of  some  responsible  post,  but 
his  tastes  did  not  incline  him  toward  such  a  career.  However,  in 
1879,  he  consented  to  serve  as  representative  of  his  district  in  the 
legislature  and  again  in  1883  lie  was  elected  to  the  assembly.  Dur- 
ing both  of  his  terms  he  gave  his  support  to  measures  for  the  benefit 
of  his  constituents  and  proved  himself  a  man  of  progressive  spirit. 
Before  leaving  Missouri,  in  1852  he  became  a  member  of  the  Inde- 
pendent Order  of  Odd  Fellows  and  later  his  membership  was  trans- 
ferred to  the  lodge  at  Woodland. 


January  2,  1873,  Mr.  Hershey  married  Ella  L.  Flournoy,  the 
daughter  of  W.  S.  Flournoy.  To  them  were  born  the  following  chil- 
dren: Cornelia,  Davidella,  May,  Grace  H,  David  N.  and  Florence, 
all  of  whom  are  enjoying  advantages  of  the  schools  of  the  present 
time.  From  the  time  of  his  settlement  in  Yolo  county  in  1853  until 
his  death,  which  occurred  February  5,  1903,  Mr.  Hershey  was  a 
witness  of  the  remarkable  growth  and  development  made  in  this 
section  of  the  state.  Nor  was  any  citizen  more  interested  than  be  in 
the  promotion  of  measures  tending  to  render  this  county  in  every 
respect  a  desirable  place  for  settlement.  Education,  religion,  com- 
mercial enterprises  and  agricultural  industries,  all  those  factors  con- 
nected with  the  true  and  permanent  development  of  a  place  found  in 


<S>j£&~<^       «&' 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  339 

him  a  stanch  supporter  and  generous  contributor,  and  no  history  of 
Yolo  county  could  lie  written  without  giving'  due  praise  to  the  citi- 
zenship of  David  N.  Ilershey. 


WILLIAM  J.  CANNEDY 

The  energetic  enterprises  incident  to  the  existence  of  a  Cali- 
fornia pioneer  have  left  to  Mr.  Cannedy  little  leisure  for  reverting 
to  memories  of  the  past  and  the  days  of  his  youth  seem  far  distant 
indeed.  Boston,  Mass.,  is  his  native  city,  and  his  birth  occurred 
February  6,  1828,  while  his  schooling  was  also  obtained  there. 
From  a  lad  he  followed  the  sea,  entering  many  ports  in  foreign 
lands.  Afterwards  lie  located  in  New  Orleans,  La.,  from  which 
point  he  ran  on  the  Mississippi  river,  and  he  was  also  an  expert 
diver.  Subsequently  he  owned  and  sailed  a  small  craft,  with 
which  he  carried  on  a  transportation  trade  up  and  down  the  Mis- 
sissippi river. 

William  J.  Cannedy  was  married  in  New  Orleans,  La.,  De- 
cember 25,  1853,  to  Ellen  Cloughesey,  a  native  of  Ireland  and  a 
member  of  an  ancient  and  honored  family  of  that  country.  The 
young  couple  came  to  California  via  Panama  and  at  the  latter 
point  were  obliged  to  wait  fifteen  days  for  a  steamer.  The  prin- 
cipal excitement  of  the  intervening  period  was  the  celebration  of 
a  Mexican  bull  fight.  The  voyage  ended  in  safety  at  San  Fran- 
cisco during  July  of  1855  and  the  young  gold-seeker  afterward 
passed  through  all  the  disappointments  and  trials  incident  to 
pioneering  in  the  west.  A  brief  sojourn  at  Yallejo,  Solano  county, 
was  followed  by  a  successful  experience  at  Sailors'  Diggings,  Ore 
gon,  whence  at  the  expiration  of  four  months  he  returned  to  Sacra- 
mento. For  about  six  months  he  lived  on  the  Calaveras  river 
between  Mokelumne  Hill  and  Stockton  and  later  found  employ 
ment  at  Sacramento.  The  only  railroad  of  the  pioneer  period 
extended  from  Sacramento  to  Polsom  and  produce  was  necessarily 
shipped  by  water,  Sacramento  and  Stockton  being  the  principal 
Shipping  points  for  the  central  part  of  the  state.  Notwithstanding 
the  commercial  advantages  thus  enjoyed  by  these  two  points,  the 
future  capital  of  the  state  was  an  insignificant  hamlet,  nor  -lid 
Stockton  possess  many  houses  or  stores. 

Upon  establishing  a  permanent  citizenship  in  Yolo  county 
in  1858  Mr.  Cannedy  took  up  a  homestead  of  one  hundred  and  sixty 
acres  and  later  under  the  school  act  he  pre-empted  four  hundred 
and  eighty  acres,  afterward  buying  enough  to  give  him  a   total   of 


340  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

fourteen  hundred  and  forty  acres  in  one  body.  He  now  owns  a 
ranch  of  six  hundred  and  twenty  acres  on  Putah  creek  ten  miles 
west  of  Winters,  where  he  is  engaged  in  stock-raising  and  farming. 
In  addition  he  owns  property  in  Winters,  including  an  attractive 
and  convenient  modern  bungalow,  surrounded  by  beautiful  shade 
trees  and  also  a  sufficient  number  of  fruit  trees  to  furnish  assorted 
fruits  for  the  family.  A  specialty  is  made  of  grain  and  large  crops 
of  wheat  and  barley  have  been  harvested  from  the  land.  His 
attention  has  been  given  closely  to  the  management  of  the  land 
and  he  has  had  little  leisure  for  participation  in  public  affairs, 
but  is  always  depended  upon  to  vote  the  Republican  ticket  in 
national  elections  and  supports  all  movements  for  the  upbuilding 
of  the  county.  Having  no  children  of  their  own,  Mr.  and  Mrs. 
Cannedy  adopted  one  boy  and  two  girls,  namely:  William  A.,  Mary 
and  Charlotte  D.  Mary  is  now  the  wife  of  Clarence  Scott  and 
the  mother  of  four  children,  William,  Adelene,  Emmett  and  Mar- 
garet. Charlotte  D.  married  the  late  Dr.  Allen  P.  Popes  of  Winters 
and  has  three  children,  Ellis,  Mark  and  Allen. 


JOSEPH  T.  COOPER 

Significant  of  his  future  identification  with  California  is  the 
fact  that  the  year  of  Mr.  Cooper's  birth  was  likewise  the  year  mem- 
orable in  our  national  development  through  the  vast  westward 
migration  drawn  to  the  Pacific  coast  through  the  discovery  of  gold. 
The  son  of  a  pioneer  Argonaut  who,  however,  remained  in  the 
west  for  a  comparatively  brief  period,  he  heard  in  boyhood  many 
stories  concerning  the  region  beyond  the  mountains  and  across  the 
plains  and  thus  became  interested  in  the  coast  country  to  an  extent 
determining  his  future  associations.  Arriving  at  maturity  with  no 
education  except  such  as  he  had  secured  through  his  own  energy 
and  no  material  advantages  save  those  of  his  own  creation,  he  de- 
termined to  try  his  fortune  in  the  western  region  visited  by  his 
father  more  than  twenty  years  before,  and  accordingly  in  1873  he 
came  to  the  state  in  which  he  has  since  made  a  home.  It  was  during 
1882  that  he  came  to  Yolo  county  and  here  he  has  since  remained, 
meanwhile  owning,  occupying  and  developing  the  valuable  farm  of 
eighty  acres  to  which  he  holds  the  title  and  which  stands  within  a 
short  distance  of  Yolo. 

Very  early  in  the  colonization  of  Missouri  the  Cooper  family 
established  themselves  in  that  state.     There  Hendley  Cooper  was 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  341 

born  and  reared  and  there  he  married  Miss  Mary  Ann  Gibson,  a  na- 
tive of  Louisa  county,  Va.  Among  their  children  was  a  son,  Joseph 
T.,  born  January  16,  1849,  at  the  familj"  homestead  lying  on  the 
banks  of  the  Missouri  river  in  Howard  county,  Mo.  The  year  after 
the  birth  of  the  son  the  father  went  across  the  plains  with  a  brother- 
in-law  and  after  his  arrival  in  California  took  up  a  claim  on  Cache 
creek,  but  finding  himself  lonely  far  from  the  associations  of  youth 
and  the  refinements  of  civilization  he  gave  up  the  land  in  a  few 
years,  returning  to  Howard  county,  where  he  remained  until  his 
death.  On  account  of  conditions  in  Missouri  incident  to  the  Civil 
war  it  was  impossible  for  Joseph  T.  Cooper  to  enjoy  many  educa- 
tional advantages  and  he  is  therefore  almost  wholly  self  educated, 
having  by  diligent  application  in  mature  years  gained  a  broad 
knowledge  concerning  all  important  topics.  When  he  started  west 
in  1872  he  found  employment  at  Helena,  Mont.,  from  which  point 
he  went  to  Utah.  A  brief  sojourn  there  was  followed  by  his  re- 
moval to  California  and  his  settlement  on  leased  land  now  the  site 
of  the  Soldiers'  Home  in  Napa  county,  where  he  became  interested 
in  general  farming.  Through  his  prominent  identification  with  the 
Grange  he  was  selected  to  superintend  the  Grange  store  at  Yount- 
ville  and  carry  on  the  business,  later  disposing  of  the  goods  at  a 
public  sale  and  closing  out  the  concern  to  the  best  interests  of  all 
connected  therewith.  In  1882  he  came  to  YTolo  county  and  pur- 
chased a  bare  tract  of  land,  which  since  has  been  improved  under 
his  capable  oversight.  On  the  property  in  1904  he  erected  an  at- 
tractive two-story  residence  and  he  also  has  erected  convenient 
barns  and  other  outbuildings,  still  further  beautifying  the  tract  by 
the  planting  of  ornamental  and  fruit  trees. 

While  making  Napa  county  his  headquarters  Mr.  Cooper  mar- 
ried Miss  Emma  C.  May,  who  was  born  and  reared  there,  but  passed 
the  years  of  young  womanhood,  prior  to  her  marriage,  in  San 
Benito  and  San  Francisco.  She  was  the  daughter  of  Judge  James 
May  of  San  Benito  county.  They  are  the  parents  of  four  children, 
namely:  Lillie  M.,  wife  of  A.  M.  Bemmerly,  a  well-known  rancher 
of  Yolo  county;  May  V.,  Mrs.  A.  E.  Scarlett,  of  Yolo;  Emmett  C,  of 
this  county;  and  Jay  T.,  who  graduated  from  the  Behind  Stanford 
University  at  Palo  Alto,  class  of  1912,  with  degree  LL.  B.  No  de- 
sire has  been  stronger  with  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Cooper  than  that  of  see- 
ing their  children  honored  and  useful  members  of  whatever  com- 
munity they  may  identify  themselves  with,  and  with  this  object  in 
view  they  have  trained  them  wisely,  educated  them  carftdly  and 
encouraged  their  early  efforts  in  industrial  affairs.  Unitedly  the 
family  have  labored  to  improve  their  homestead  and  they  are  justly 
proud  of  the  neat  and  well-kept  place,  with  its  splendid  orchard  of 
apples,  pears,  apricots,  peaches,  plums,  lemons  and  oranges,   and 


342  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

with  its  valuable  vineyard  of  sixteen  acres  producing  large  quanti- 
ties of  raisin  grapes.  Not  only  the  quality  of  their  fruit,  but  also 
of  their  stock,  is  recognized,  for  their  dairy  cows,  their  pure-bred 
hogs  and  their  work  horses  testify  to  their  owner's  care  and  wise 
supervision.  On  the  organization  of  the  Woodland  creamery,  as 
also  of  the  Knight's  Landing  creamery,  Mr.  Cooper  became  inter- 
ested in  the  new  enterprises,  buying  stock  in  the  concerns,  and  he 
served  as  a  director  in  both  creameries,  his  association  therewith 
giving  him  a  convenient  market  for  the  cream  sold  from  the  farm. 
Other  local  and  county  movements  of  known  worth  have  received 
the  benefit  of  his  co-operation.  Politically  he  is  independent  in 
local  matters  and  votes  with  the  Democrats  in  national  issues.  In 
Masonry  he  holds  membership  with  Yolo  Lodge  No.  82,  F.  &  A.  M. 


AUGUST  BRINCK 

La  Orilla  Rancho  (which  is  Spanish  for  The  Brinck  ranch), 
located  on  the  banks  of  Putah  creek  and  commanding  a  fine 
view  of  the  coast  range,  is  the  property  of  August  Brinck  and 
represents  the  tangible  results  of  his  splendid  judgment  and  tireless 
industry.  The  eye  of  the  stranger  at  once  is  attracted  to  the 
modern  residence,  completed  in  1911  and  embodying-  the  principal 
features  of  the  bungalow  type  of  architecture.  Two  sides  of 
the  house  are  surrounded  by  a  commodious  veranda  finished  with 
native  cobble-stones  and  floored  with  tile.  Another  attraction 
for  the  stranger  is  the  great  orchard  filled  with  fruit  of  every 
kind  and  boasting  fig  trees  that  were  planted  in  1851  by  John 
Wolfskill.  Some  of  these  trees  have  grown  to  such  magnitude 
that  they  now  measure  thirteen  feet  in  circumference  and  four 
feet  in  diameter,  being  not  only  the  largest  trees  of  the  kind  in 
Yolo  county,  but  also,  as  far  as  known,  in  the  entire  state. 

The  owner  of  La  Orilla  rancho  is  of  Alsatian  birth  and  ances- 
try and  was  horn  October  15,  1860,  into  the  family  of  Henry 
and  Elise  (Kline)  Brinck.  The  father,  who  was  a  farmer  and 
baker  in  France,  spent  his  last  years  with  his  sons  near  Winters 
and  the  mother  died  in  New  York  City.  Four  children  of  the 
parental  family  are  now  living  and  August  is  the  youngest  of 
these.  When  nine  years  of  age  he  left  Alsace  with  his  parents 
and  crossed  the  ocean  to  New  York  City,  where  he  lived  for  three 
years.  During  1872  he  came  to  California  and  early  began  to 
work   for   his   older   brothers,   who    were    orchardists    in    Pleasant 


-  / 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  345 

valley,  continuing  with  them  until  some  years  after  he  had  attained 
his  majority.  While  first  working  under  them  as  an  apprentice 
he  learned  every  detail  of  horticulture,  so  that  they  paid  him  fair 
wages  after  he  was  twenty-one  and  thus  he  was  able  to  lay  aside 
a  small  sum  to  aid  him  in  getting  a  start  for  himself.  With  his 
twin  brother,  Charles,  he  purchased  forty  acres  from  Buel  R. 
Sackett  in  Yolo  county  and  later  added  another  tract  of  equal 
size.  In  a  few  years  Charles  died,  leaving  a  little  daughter  to 
inherit  his  property  and  through  the  wise  judgment  of  her  uncle 
in  planting  the  acreage  in  fruit  trees  and  carefully  tending  the 
orchard  her  inheritance  was  materially  increased. 

Upon  the  division  of  the  property  in  1911  Mr.  Brinck  retained 
his  portion,  which  he  managed  together  with  forty  acres  in  the 
l)e  Yilbiss  tract  one  and  one-half  miles  west  of  Winters.  The 
latter  place  he  sold  in  1911.  Meanwhile,  in  1908,  he  had  pur- 
chased the  old  De  Yilbiss  homestead  of  one  hundred  and  sixty-seven 
acres  one  and  one-half  miles  west  of  Winters,  one  of  the  old 
orchards  of  the  district.  With  his  other  holdings  this  now  gives 
him  the  title  to  two  hundred  and  seventeen  acres,  all  of  which 
is  in  an  orchard,  with  the  finest  quality  of  apricots,  peaches,  plums. 
prunes,  almonds  and  figs.  The  product  is  packed  and  shipped 
either  as  ripe  or  dried  fruit,  and  to  aid  in  the  work  Mr.  Brinck 
erected  a  packing  house  and  drying  sheds,  as  well  as  installing  an 
electric  plant,  by  which  means  water  is  pumped  and  the  whole 
ranch  lighted.  The  entire  equipment  is  up-to-date.  A  system  has 
been  adopted  that  secures  the  largest  results  with  the  smallest 
possible  expenditure  of  capital  and  labor.  In  his  knowledge  of 
horticulture  he  is  backed  by  years  of  successful  experience.  His 
judgment  concerning  fruits  is  often  sought  by  men  in  his  line  of 
business.  As  an  expression  of  his  high  standing  in  the  fruit 
industry  he  was  selected  to  serve  as  horticultural  commissioner  of 
Yolo  county  and  for  five  years  he  tilled  the  position  with  the  great- 
est efficiency.  In  addition  lie  has  been  chosen  a  director  of  the 
Winters  Dried  Fruit  Company  and  the  Geraldson  Fig  Company. 

The  limit  of  the  activities  of  Mr.  Brinck  is  not  represented  by 
horticultural  interests.  The  public  school  system  has  in  him  a 
firm  champion.  For  years  he  has  contributed  to  the  educational 
progress  of  his  locality  and  at  this  writing  he  still  serves  as  a 
member  of  the  board  of  education  of  the  Apricot  district  and  as 
a  member  of  the  Winters  union  high  school  board.  The  Citizens 
Bank  of  Winters  has  his  name  upon  its  roll  of  stockholders  and 
directors.  Near  Old  Buckeye,  Yolo  county,  November  S,  1890,  Rev. 
Henry  Culton  officiating,  he  was  united  in  marriage  with  Miss 
Dora  AVurth,  a  native  of  Yolo  county,  and  a  daughter  of  that  hon- 
ored  pioneer  couple,  John   and   Gertrude    (Koch)    Wnrth.     Three 


346  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

daughters  blessed  the  union,  Elsiedora,  Pearl  and  Grace,  the  eldest 
of  whom  is  now  a  student  in  the  University  of  California,  while 
the  two  youngest  are  attending  the  Winters  high  school.  The 
family  have  their  religious  home  in  the  Presbyterian  Church  at 
Winters.  During  young  manhood  Mr.  Brinck  was  made  a  Mason 
in  Buckeye  Lodge  No.  195,  F.  &  A.  M.,  at  Winters,  and  he  still 
is  identified  with  that  organization,  besides  being  with  his  wife 
associated  with  the  work  of  Yosolano  Chapter  No.  218,  0.  E.  S., 
also  at  Winters,  where  in  addition  he  holds  membership  with  the 
Independent  Order  of  Odd  Fellows.  The  Republican  party  has 
received  his  stanch  support  ever  since  he  cast  his  first  ballot  and 
he  has  been  a  firm  believer  in  the  efficacy  of  its  platform  as  adapted 
to  the  promotion  of  national  prosperty. 


JOHN  CHRISTIAN  LUFT 

Davis,  Yolo  county,  boasts  no  more  substantial  and  devoted 
citizen  than  John  C.  Luft,  who,  though  not  a  native  of  the  United 
States,  ever  since  his  immigration  to  the  new  world  has  taken  the 
deepest  interest  in  matters  nmnicipal  as  well  as  social.  He  was 
born  at  Husum,  Sleswick-Holstein,  Germany,  September  11,  1863, 
and  upon  finishing  his  education  became  an  apprentice  to  a  black- 
smith, serving  the  customary  four  years.  At  the  age  of  nineteen, 
alone  and  unaided,  he  came  to  America,  where  he  gradually  ac- 
quired the  competency  which  is  his  today.  For  a  year  after  his 
arrival  in  this  country  he  worked  in  the  shops  of  the  John  Deere 
Plow  Company,  Moline,  111.,  and  at  the  close  of  that  period,  having 
saved  a  sufficient  sum  with  which  to  continue  his  journey  west,  he 
came  to  California.  Arriving  in  1883  in  Livermore,  Alameda  county, 
he  worked  at  his  trade  for  a  time,  after  which  he  removed  to 
Dixon,  Solano  county,  where  for  eight  years  he  worked  at  his 
trade.  In  1893  he  came  to  Davis  and  purchased  his  present  building 
and  established  the  blacksmith  shop  which  he  now  operates,  the 
excellent  training  which  he  received  in  his  native  land  enabling  him 
to  perform  the  most  exacting  and  difficult  work  in  his  line.  Besides 
doing  a  general  shoeing  and  repair  business  he  builds  carriages 
and  plows  with  a  skill  which  is  recognized  and  sought  throughout 
the  county.  He  owns  not  only  his  well-equipped  shop,  but  a  com- 
fortable home  and  five  lots  as  well,  and  it  is  to  his  credit  that  not 
once  has  he  changed  his  location  or  failed  in  his  work  since  his 
arrival  at  Davis,  while  many  of  his  neighbors  have  started  in  busi- 
ness only  to  abandon  their  enterprises  later. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  347 

In  1893  Mr.  Luft  married  Miss  Etta  Frittz,  a  native  of  Lake 
county,  Cal.,  and  into  their  home  were  born  the  following  children : 
John  E.,  Oliver  F.,  Maud  L.  and  Lawrence.  Mr.  Luft  is  a  member 
of  the  Odd  Fellows  and  since  1904  has  occupied  a  place  on  the 
school  board,  which  he  also  served  as  clerk  two  years,  and  at  the 
last  election  was  unanimously  chosen  to  continue  the  office  for  the 
regular  term  of  three  years. 


GEORGE  L.  BARNES 

The  native  sons  of  the  Golden  West  did  not  have  the  distinc- 
tion of  "coming  the  plains  across"  as  did  their  pioneer  fathers 
and  mothers.  The  children  grew  up  with  the  country — were  a 
part  of  it  from  their  earliest  times,  a  product  of  the  soil.  Nathan 
Barnes,  a  native  of  Ohio,  left  St.  Louis,  Mo.,  in  1852  and  crossed 
the  plains  to  California  with  ox-teams.  .  The  large  train  disbanded 
at  Sacramento  and  Mr.  Barnes  some  years  later  located  in  Solano 
county,  not  far  from  Denverton.  He  was  there  married  to  Miss 
Elizabeth  Brock,  a  native  of  Wisconsin,  who  came  to  California 
with  her  mother,  via  Panama,  about  1854.  The  father  was  acci- 
dentally killed  in  a  runaway  in  1884,  but  the  mother  is  still  living, 
at  the  old  home  place  near  Denverton.  The  eight  children  born 
to  these  parents  were  as  follows:  Ross,  Maurice,  Henry  C,  Ben- 
jamin 0.,  Fred  S.,  George  L.,  Anna  and  Maud. 

George  L.  Barnes  was  born  in  Solano  county  December  25, 
1866,  and  therefore  is  eligible  to  membership  in  the  Native  Sons 
of  the  Golden  West.  He  was  educated  in  the  public  schools  and 
afterward  followed  farming  until  1892,  when  he  removed  to  Win- 
ters and  assumed  the  management  of  the  F.  B.  Chandler  Com- 
pany lumber  yard.  This  enterprise  was  established  in  1876  and 
has  continued  to  do  business  at  the  old  stand  ever  since. 

George  L.  Barnes  married  Miss  Nellie  V.  Humphrey,  a  native 
of  Berryessa  valley,  and  a  graduate  of  the  schools  of  Winters. 
Their  four  children  are  Paul,  Helen,  Lowell  and  Virginia.  Paul 
and  Helen  are  pupils  at  Winters.  Like  other  residents  of  that 
remarkable  fruitful  locality,  Mr.  Barnes  has  his  orchards  near 
his  home  town,  and  for  several  years  past  has  gathered  splendid 
crops  of  fruit  from  his  trees.  His  time,  however,  is  devoted  prin- 
cipally to  the  lumber  business,  which  has  grown  to  be  the  largest 
in  this  end  of  Yolo  county. 

Mr.   Barnes  is  a  member   of  several   fraternal    organizations. 


348  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

being  a  charter  member  of  the  Foresters  and  of  the  Woodmen 
of  the  World.  For  a  number  of  years  he  has  been  a  member  of 
the  board  of  trustees  t»f  his  city,  and  at  present  is  president. 
During  this  time  the  sewer  system  has  been  built.  For  six  years 
lie  was  also  clerk  of  the  board  of  school  trustees.  With  his  wife 
Mr.  Barnes  is  a  communicant  of  the  Christian  Church.  He  has 
always  been  a  Republican  in  politics,  of  the  progressive  and 
independent  variety,  and  this  progressiveness  has  characterized 
all  his  life.  His  lumber  establishment  is  one  of  the  enterprising 
business  features  of  Winters,  as  its  proprietor  is  one  of  its  most 
enterprising  citizens. 


ROY  EMMETT  C(  )LE 

The  prestige  afforded  by  lineage  of  honored  pioneer  strain, 
illumined  by  personal  prominence  resultant  from  intelligent  activi- 
ties, bestows  increased  importance  upon  the  standing  of  Mr.  Cole, 
who  as  county  treasurer  of  Yolo  county,  enjoys  distinction  as  one 
of  the  youngest  county  officials  in  the  state  in  point  of  years,  and 
is  the  youngest  county  treasurer  in  the  entire  commonwealth.  la 
point  of  fidelity  to  bis  trust  and  devotion  to  his  duty  he  is  sur- 
passed by  no  other  incumbent  of  the  office  in  any  part  of  the  state, 
nor  do  the  records  of  the  past  in  his  own  county  furnish  the  name 
of  any  treasurer  more  capable  than  he  or  more  intelligently  active 
in  protecting  the  financial  interests  of  the  county.  Whatever  of 
success  he  already  has  attained  it  may  be  attributed  to  bis  own 
unaided  exertions,  for  he  had  no  help  in  starting  out  for  himself 
and  only  his  own  resolute  force  of  purpose  enabled  him  to  obtain 
an  excellent  education,  for  the  family,  although  highly  respected, 
possessed  little  means  and  naturally  the  struggle  for  a  livelihood 
was  constant. 

The  paternal  grandfather  of  Mr.  Cole,  John  B.  Cole,  was 
born  in  Kentucky.  Later  years  found  him  in  Iowa,  and  still  later, 
in  1852,  be  came  to  California  with  his  family,  consisting  of  his 
wife  and  two  children,  William  and  David,  and  settled  on  a  farm 
in  Yolo  county,  and  bere  he  and  his  wife  passed  away.  Before 
her  marriage  the  grandmother  was  Julia  Jacobs,  a  native  of  Mis- 
souri. David  V.  was  born  while  his  parents  were  living  in  Iowa 
and  he  was  still  a  small  child  when  removal  was  made  to  Cali- 
fornia in  1852.  During  young  manhood  he  went  to  Oregon,  having 
previously  married  Eliza  Anderson,  who  was  born  in  Sacramento 


<^<r<gg 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  351 

county,  the  daughter  of  William  Anderson.  The  latter  was  born 
in  Missouri  and  in  young  manhood,  about  1852,  came  to  California. 
Here  he  married  Drucilla  Swinney,  also  a  native  of  Missouri. 
Mr.  Anderson  died  in  Oregon,  and  his  wife  still  makes  her  home 
in  Gilliam  county,  that  state.  Returning  to  California  about  the 
year  1893,  David  V.  Cole  settled  near  Capay,  Yolo  county,  but 
since  1902  has  made  Woodland  his  home. 

Roy  E.  Cole  was  born  in  Gilliam  county,  Ore.,  September  20, 
1885.  After  completing  the  studies  of  the  country  schools  he 
entered  the  Woodland  high  school  and  in  1906  was  graduated  from 
that  institution.  Later  he  studied  in  the  Woodland  Business 
College.  An  examination  in  which  he  received  credits  unusually 
high  enabled  him  to  secure  a  teacher's  certificate  and  he  then 
began  to  teach  in  the  Eureka  district.  At  the  close  of  the  term  he 
was  engaged  as  principal  of  the  Cacheville  school.  In  1910  he 
entered  the  campaign  for  the  nomination  on  the  Democratic  ticket 
for  county  treasurer  and  in  the  primaries  won  the  nomination  over 
two  competitors,  both  of  whom  were  popular  and  capable.  He 
was  elected  by  a  good  majority  and  took  the  oath  of  office  Janu- 
ary 2,  1911.  Since  entering  upon  his  official  duties  he  has  given 
his  attention  closely  to  the  work  and  has  proved  his  fitness  for 
the  position.  Among  business  men,  as  among  his  schoolmates  in 
earlier  life,  he  has  been  popular.  It  is  said  that  the  young  men 
who  have  known  him  throughout  the  most  of  his  life  are  his  most 
ardent  champions.  In  boyhood  they  learned  to  rightly  estimate 
his  personal  worth.  His  sterling  qualities  of  mind  and  heart 
they  have  recognized.  Their  appreciation  of  his  companionship 
has  been  constant  as  also  their  regard  for  his  genial  temperament 
and  his  persevering  industry.  Older  people,  witnessing  the  self- 
denial  of  his  early  struggles  and  the  honest  impulses  governing 
his  acts,  have  become  his  friends  and  tender  to  his  official  career 
their  zealous  support. 

Mr.  Cole  was  married  in  Yolo  county  June  17,  1911,  to  Miss 
Louise  Brownell,  a  native  of  Yolo  county  and  the  daughter  of 
William  and  lone  (Hayes)   Brownell,  pioneers  of  the  county. 


JOHN  DICKSON  STEPHENS 

Prom  the  time  of  the  establishment  of  the  first  bank  in  Yolo 
county  until  his  demise  almost  thirty  years  later  Mr.  Stephens  sus- 
tained a  wide  reputation  as  one  of  the  most  able  and  far-seeinir 
financiers  of  Woodland.     His  the  keen  mental  vision  that  discerned 


352  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

the  need  of  adequate  banking  facilities  in  the  then  frontier  settle- 
ment ;  his  the  sincerity  of  citizenship  that  gave  to  the  community  an 
example  of  unselfish  devotion  to  duty;  and  his  the  intelligent  in- 
sight into  financial  problems  that  laid  stanch  and  deep  and  strong 
the  foundations  of  a  banking  institution  honored  among;  the  bankers 
of  the  entire  state.  Nor  did  he  leave  the  impress  of  his  fine  person- 
ality alone  upon  banking  enterprises,  for  he  also  was  known  and 
honored  as  a  philanthropist  of  wise  activities,  a  stock-raiser  of  suc- 
cessful experience,  a  pioneer  miner  of  conservative  policies  and  a 
citizen  of  cultured  attainments.  His  death,  which  occurred  August 
27,  1898,  was  a  loss  not  only  to  the  bank  of  which  he  had  been 
the  first  and  only  president,  but  also  was  recognized  as  a  distinct 
loss  to  dignified,  unselfish,  high-minded  citizenship. 

A  study  of  the  genealogy  of  the  Stephens  family  indicates  a 
mingling  of  Welsh  blood  with  that  of  the  sturdy  Scotch  race.  Long 
before  the  Revolutionary  war  the  family  was  transplanted  upon  the 
shores  of  America  and  united  with  the  loyal  followers  of  Penn  in 
the  early  development  of  the  timber  lands  of  the  Keystone  state, 
where  Peter  Stephens  was  born  about  1690  or  1700.  Little  is  known 
concerning  his  life  except  that  he  founded  the  village  of  Stephens- 
burg  in  Pennsylvania  and  held  a  position  of  influence  in  that  com- 
munity. The  next  generation  was  represented  by  Peter,  Jr.,  who 
married  Johanna  Chrisman  and  moved  to  Wythe  county,  Va.,  thus 
founding  the  family  in  the  Old  Dominion.  In  his  home  there  were 
reared  seven  sons  and  one  daughter.  A  noteworthy  indication  of 
the  patriotic  spirit  of  the  family  is  afforded  by  the  statement  that 
all  of  the  seven  sons  served  in  the  Revolutionary  war.  Five  lived  to 
see  their  country  free  and  independent,  but  two  fell  upon  battle- 
fields. 

Among  the  five  patriotic  brothers  who  lived  to  enjoy  the  fruits 
of  their  sacrifices  as  soldiers  there  was  one,  Joseph,  in  whom  the 
pioneer  instinct  of  developing  the  frontier  was  especially  well  de- 
veloped and  who  became  successively  a  pioneer  of  three  great  com- 
monwealths. After  his  marriage  in  1790  to  Rhoda  Cole  he  contin- 
ued to  live  in  Virginia  for  more  than  a  decade,  but  the  year  1801 
found  him  and  his  family  following  the  tide  of  emigration  across 
the  mountains  into  the  blue  grass  regions  of  Kentucky,  where  he 
built  a  cabin  in  Wayne  county,  turned  the  first  furrows  of  virgin 
soil  and  endured  the  dangers  and  privations  of  the  frontier.  In  a 
search  for  better  conditions  he  removed  to  Tennessee  in  1815,  but  not 
finding  the  satisfactory  environment  that  he  desired  he  made  a  new 
move  during  1817.  In  that  year  he  loaded  his  possessions  into 
"prairie  schooners"  and  followed  the  blazed  trail  to  the  Mississippi 
river,  crossed  that  stream,  journeyed  forward  to  the  Missouri  river 
and  after  crossing  it  he  made  a  settlement  in  Cooper  county,  Mo., 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  353 

upon  raw  land  thirteen  miles  south  of  Boonville.  In  this  memorable 
journey  he  had  been  accompanied  by  all  of  his  children  excepting 
Mary,  who  had  married  and  settled  near  the  old  home.  After  years 
of  struggle  and  hardship  he  passed  away  May  7,  1836,  at  his  home 
near  Buneeton.  His  descendants  are  scattered  throughout  the  en- 
tire west  and  are  very  numerous,  for  he  was  the  father  of  twelve 
children  by  his  first  wife.  One  of  these  was  Joseph  Lee,  the  father 
of  Lon  V.  Stephens,  ex-governor  of  Missouri,  and  another  son  was 
Speed  Stephens,  president  of  the  Bank  of  Buneeton.  By  his  second 
wife,  Catharine  Dickson,  there  were  nine  children,  as  follows:  John 
D.,  George  D.,  Andrew  J.,  Thomas  H.  B.,  Margaret,  Alpha,  Har- 
riet, Isabella  and  Lee  Ann. 

John  Dickson  Stephens  was  born  near  Buneeton,  Mo.,  Septem- 
ber 23,  1826,  and  was  the  eldest  son  of  his  father's  second  marriage. 
When  he  was  a  boy  public  educational  institutions  had  not  been  in- 
troduced, but  he  had  excellent  advantages  in  private  schools  and  was 
well  qualified  to  teach.  His  first  source  of  income  came  as  a  teacher 
from  1844  to  1846.  At  the  opening  of  the  war  with  Mexico  he  volun- 
teered in  the  service,  was  assigned  to  a  regiment  and  marched  to 
the  front,  but  his  company  saw  no  active  service,  the  war  having 
been  brought  to  a  successful  issue.  When  all  hope  of  military  ser- 
vice had  to  be  abandoned  he  turned  to  the  study  of  medicine,  and  it 
is  probable  that  he  would  have  been  a  lifelong  practitioner  in  Mis- 
souri had  not  the  discovery  of  gold  in  California  turned  his  thoughts 
toward  the  then  unknown  west. 

Together  with  a  brother  and  various  of  their  acquaintances 
John  D.  Stephens  sought  fortune  in  the  mines,  but  he  met  with  so 
little  success  that  he  began  to  investigate  other  means  of  earning  a 
livelihood.  From  Sacramento  he  traveled  through  Yolo  county,  then 
an  unsettled  region  whose  possibilities  had  not  attracted  attention 
from  the  emigrants.  With  keen  discernment  he  decided  that  there 
was  a  chance  for  a  struggling  easterner  in  this  county  and  accord- 
ingly he  took  up  raw  land  and  engaged  in  ranching.  It  is  said  that 
he  was  the  first  to  successfully  raise  grain  here.  In  addition  he  was 
a  pioneer  in  introducing  high-grade  stock.  For  years  his  sheep  won 
prizes  at  the  state  fairs  and  county  exhibitions.  In  the  raising  of 
mules  and  horses,  Durham  cattle  and  Poland-China  hogs,  lie  was 
equally  successful,  the  only  drawback  to  material  prosperity  being 
the  lack  of  adequate  marketing  facilities,  also  the  shortage  of  water. 
The  latter  impediment,  however,  was  overcome  through  his  organi- 
zation in  1863  of  the  Capay  Ditch  Company,  which  built  a  reservoir 
for  storing  the  waters  of  the  Cache  creek  canyon  and  thereby  irri- 
gating the  plains  below. 

Various  mining  ventures,  one  of  which  brought  him  excellent 
returns  from  the  Conistock  lodge  in  Nevada,  enabled  Mr.  Stephens 


354  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

in  1867  to  return  to  Yolo  county  with  increased  finances  for  invest- 
ments. Shortly  afterward  he  formed  an  alliance  with  various 
moneyed  men  of  Yolo  county  and  financed  the  organization  in  1868 
of  the  Bank  of  Woodland,  the  first  hank  here,  of  which  solid  and 
substantial  institution  he  became  the  first,  and  remained  the  only 
president  until  his  death.  Notwithstanding  panics  and  depressions 
the  bank  never  lost  the  confidence  of  depositors,  never  refused  to 
meet  an  obligation  and  never  betrayed  the  trust  of  even  the  humb- 
lest individual.  Its  record  was  unimpeachable,  its  investments  con- 
servative, its  policy  cautious  yet  progressive  and  its  results  certain 
and  satisfactory,  for  which  condition  the  stockholders  gave  the 
credit  to  the  founder  and  president  of  the  institution.  He  organ- 
ized the  Woodland  gas  works  and  managed  it  for  many  years.  It 
was  he,  too,  who  started  the  water  works  of  Woodland  and  was  at 
the  helm  until  it  was  sold  to  the  city. 

The  marriage  of  Mr.  Stephens  and  Mary  F.  Alexander  was  sol- 
emnized at  Bellair,  Cooper  county,  Mo.,  January  4,  1854,  and  thus 
began  a  union  of  mutual  helpfulness  and  happiness.  During  the 
colonial  era  the  Alexander  family  had  crossed  the  ocean  from  Scot- 
land to  Virginia  and  had  gained  prominence  in  the  Old  Dominion, 
where  the  historic  town  of  Alexandria  was  named  for  her  grand- 
father. Later  the  family  became  established  in  Kentucky,  where  she 
was  born.  Of  her  three  children  the  only  survivor  is  Kate,  wife  of 
Hon.  Joseph  Craig,  of  Woodland.  The  children  were  born  in  an 
adobe  house  one  and  one-half  miles  west  of  Madison,  Yolo  county, 
the  old  homestead  of  the  family,  but  later  occupied  by  the  family  of 
the  brother,  George  Dickson  Stephens,  who  enlarged  the  original 
house  that  had  been  constructed  by  Indians  in  the  old  Californian 
style  of  architecture.  In  his  marriage  Mr.  Stephens  was  most  for- 
tunate, for  his  wife  possessed  many  superior  qualities  of  mind  and 
heart,  exhibited  an  unfailing  gentleness  under  all  circumstances,  and 
found  in  her  home  a  vivid  satisfaction  that  enabled  her  to  radiate 
its  happiness  among  her  wide  circle  of  friends.  She  survived  her 
husband  several  years  and  died  in  Fulton,  Mo.,  in  1906. 

No  record  of  the  life  of  the  late  Mr.  Stephens  would  lie  com- 
plete without  mention  of  his  prominence  in  Masonry.  He  was  made 
a  Mason  in  Cacheville  Lodge,  at  old  Cacheville,  and  later  was  iden- 
tified with  Woodland  Lodge  No.  156,  F.  &  A.  M.,  and  from  that  time 
he  was  one  of  its  most  popular  members.  August  16,  1859,  he  was 
iuitiated  into  the  Sacramento  Chapter  of  the  Royal  Arch  degree  and 
when  Woodland  Chapter  No.  46  was  organized  he  became  one  of  its 
charter  members  April  9,  1873.  He  was  created  a  Knight  Templar 
and  a  Knight  of  Malta  at  Sacramento.  On  January  13,  1883,  he 
with  others  instituted  the  Woodland  Commandery  No.  21  under  dis- 
pensation.   In  this  commandery  he  was  honored  with  official  respon- 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  357 

sibilities,  and  December  10,  1887,  was  chosen  eminent  commander. 
The  philanthropic  and  brotherly  principles  of  the  order  he  exempli- 
fied by  precept  and  action;  its  ministrations  and  services  remained 
to  him  not  only  an  ideal  of  duty,  but  also  a  source  of  comfort  to  his 
benevolent  temperament.  As  one  of  those  citizens  whose  pioneer 
services  were  of  incalculable  value,  whose  being  thrilled  with  pa- 
triotic devotion  to  the  county,  whose  loyalty  to  the  community  re- 
mained undiminished  to  the  end  and  whose  intellect  was  over  at  the 
service  of  the  home  of  his  adoption,  his  name  is  worthy  of  perpetua- 
tion in  the  annals  of  the  county. 


HON.   ISAAC  W.   JACOBS 

Had  Mr.  Jacobs  been  induced,  during  the  latter  years  of  his 
honorable  career,  to  depict  with  pen  the  leading  incidents  of  his 
life,  the  reader  would  have  learned  much  concerning  the  history 
of  our  country,  the  privations  endured  by  pioneers  as  they  followed 
the  tide  of  emigration  toward  the  west,  and  the  hardships  borne 
by  men  who  cleared  the  forests  or  taught  scantily  equipped  frontier 
schools,  or  practiced  law  or  medicine  or  preached  the  gospel  in 
the  obscure  hamlets  that  dotted  the  prairies  or  nestled  on  moun- 
tain sides.  The  earliest  events  in  the  life  of  this  honored  Cali- 
fornia pioneer  were  associated  with  old  Virginia.  It  was  in  Hardy 
county,  that  state,  that  he  was  born  June  24,  1820,  and  there  it 
was  that  he  rambled  in  his  care-free  boyhood  through  the  woods 
and  along  the  banks  of  the  streams,  observant,  receptive  ami 
happy.  But  all  too  soon  a  change  came  into  his  life,  and  the 
necessity  for  self  support  brought  an  abrupt  end  to  all  his  little 
careless  pleasures.  When,  at  the  age  of  fifteen  years,  he  went 
to  Ohio,  it  was  with  the  knowledge  that  thenceforth  he  must'  earn 
his  own  way  and  place  in  the  world,  but  that  knowledge  did  not 
dampen  his  ambition  or  impair  his  determination  to  complete  his 
education.  After  a  weary  day's  work  on  the  farm  lie  took  up  his 
books  and  often  he  burned  midnight  oil  in  an  effort  to  secure  the 
information  for  which  he  ardently  longed.  As  a  result  of  his  per- 
sistence he  passed  a  creditable  examination,  received  a  teacher's 
certificate  and  was  <>iven  charge  of  a  school  in  a  country  district 
in  Ohio. 

Upon  his  removal  from  Ohio  to  Missouri,  the  young  teacher 
continued  his  educational  work  for  a  year,  and  during  the  next 
year  he  studied  law  in  the  office  of  Judge  Winters.     Then,  pjoing 


358  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

to  Iowa,  he  entered  the  law  office  of  the  Hon.  G.  W.  Grimes,  after- 
ward United  States  senator  from  that  state,  and  a  year  later  he 
was  able  to  pass  a  brilliant  and  exacting  examination  before  Judge 
Mason,  chief  justice  of  the  Supreme  Court  of  Iowa  and  one  of 
the  most  eminent  jurists  of  his  day.  After  having  been  admitted  to 
practice  law  before  all  the  courts  of  Iowa,  Mr.  Jacobs  returned 
to  Missouri  and  formed  a  partnership  with  a  well  known  lawyer  of 
Buchanan  county.  He  was  still  a  young  man  when  gold  was  dis- 
covered in  California,  and  when  he  realized  the  possibilities  of  con- 
ditions here  he  determined  to  close  out  his  Missouri  interests  as 
soon  as  possible,  preparatory  to  removal  to  the  coast.  The  summer 
of  185-1  found  him  crossing  the  plains  with  a  large  expedition  of 
emigrants,  with  whom  he  experienced  the  discomforts  incidental  to 
the  primitive  mode  of  travel  which  was  the  only  one  available  for 
the  occasion.  Believing  that  more  gold  was  to  be  made  in  garnering 
crops  than  in  digging  gold  dust,  he  never  worked  in  the  mines. 
In  1854  he  was  admitted  to  practice  in  the  courts  of  California,  and 
in  1858  he  was  elected  district  attorney  of  Yolo  county.  From 
that  time  until  he  passed  away,  February  10,  1905,  he  was  identified 
with  the  public  affairs  of  the  county  and  with  its  professional  and 
agricultural  activities.  He  long  owned  and  cultivated  a  ranch 
of  four  hundred  acres  near  Yolo  and  made  a  specialty  of  grain 
and  stock  and  gradually  he  drifted  into  a  private  banking  busi- 
ness, for  the  accommodation  of  his  large  clientele  and  the  business 
community  generally.  Recognized  as  a  Democratic  leader,  he  was 
elected  by  that  party  in  1892  to  represent  his  district  in  the 
California  assembly.  In  that  position  he  gave  to  his  constituents 
the  best  of  his  talents.  He  was  not  only  a  scholar,  but  an  orator 
as  well,  and  on  public  occasions  was  often  engaged  by  his  admiring- 
fellow  citizens  as  the  principal  speaker  of  the  day. 

In  1849  Mr.  Jacobs  married  Almira  E.  Martin,  only  daughter 
of  James  Martin  and  a  native  of  Virginia.  Her  father  emigrated 
from  Missouri  to  California  in  1854  and  passed  away  in  Yuba 
county.  Mrs.  Jacobs  proved  herself  a  devoted  wife  and  mother 
and  her  earth  life  terminated  November  4,  1901.  She  bore  her 
husband  twelve  children,  John  M.,  the  first  in  order  of  birth,  died, 
aged  forty-seven  years.  Linnie  J.  was  the  next  in  order  of  nativity. 
Oscar  E.,  of  Blacks  Station,  is  represented  elsewhere  in  this  work; 
George  N.  and  James  R.,  of  Woodland,  are  also  represented  else- 
where; William  R.  is  a  well  known  lawyer  of  Los  Angeles;  Isaac 
W.  died  in  infancy;  Joseph  A.  lives  at  Knights  Landing;  Martha 
is  Mrs.  James  Taylor  of  Yolo;  Mary  is  Mrs.  Edward  Baldwin  of 
Berkeley;  Annie  E.  is  Mrs.  Welch 'of  Red  Bluff;  Van  W.  died, 
aged  thirty-five  years.  Mr.  Jacobs  died,  full  of  years  and  of 
honors,  leaving  the  priceless  legacy  of  a  good  name  to  his  children 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  359 

and  grandchildren  and  the  example  of  a  life  well  spent,  which 
should  be  of  benefit  to  the  people  among  whom  be  lived  so  long  and 
with  so  much  credit  to  himself  and  to  the  community. 


AUGUST   VALENTINE   HUCKE 

There  is  a  large  number  of  prominent  citizens  in  this  vast 
state  who  have  reached  their  present  progressive  environment  by 
overcoming  obstacles  which  would  appear  appalling  to  some,  and 
by  putting  forth  their  utmost  effort  to  solve  the  vital  problem  of 
eking  out  an  existence  and  building  up  an  enterprising  business  out 
of  the  uncultivated  country  which  they  found  here.  It  is  interesting 
to  note  that  many  of  these  were  natives  of  Germany,  among  them 
being  August  Valentine  Hucke,  whose  birth  occurred  there  August 
9,  1861. 

Upon  his  arrival  in  California  Mr.  Hucke  secured  a  situation 
.upon  a  farm  at  $25  per  month,  but  some  time  later  decided  to 
start  for  himself,  and  rented  a  tract  of  four  hundred  and  eighty 
acres,  assuming  thereby  an  indebtedness  of  $2500.  Misfortune, 
however,  accompanied  him  in  these  efforts,  his  later  lease  of  two 
hundred  acres  also  proving  a  poor  investment.  Undaunted,  deter- 
mined to  rise  above  his  defeat,  he  remained  in  the  community. 
bending  every  effort  toward  the  liquidation  of  his  obligations,  his 
quiet  courage  calling  forth  the  admiration  of  his  associates. 
Throughout  the  succeeding  years,  during  which  period  he  resided 
near  Dunnigan,  he  succeeded  not  only  in  clearino-  his  debts,  but, 
also  in  educating  his  brothers,  his  victory  having  but  added  to  the 
stability  of  his  character,  lie  took  a  three-year  lease  upon  a  tract 
of  four  hundred  and  eighty  acres  some  time  ago,  which  he  devoted 
to  general  farming  and  pasture  land,  and  he  gives  a  ureal  deal  of 
attention  to  the  raising  of  stock. 

Mr.  Hucke  is  the  owner  of  twenty-four  horses  and  mules,  and 
has  several  hue  colts,  among  them  a  span  of  twins,  brothers,  whose 
sire  has  distinguished  himself  as  a  pacer  in  several  important  races. 
his  time  having  been  two  minutes  and  nine  seconds.  Both  colts 
are  broken  to  drive  single  or  double  and  are  fine  travelers.  Mr. 
Hucke  has  one  hundred  and  twenty-five  sheep,  several  cows  ami 
about  seventy  turkeys,  all  well  kept  and  in  fine  condition.  He  has  a 
small  plot  planted  to  grapes,  which  are  now  in  bearing. 

In  1898  Mr.  Hucke  was  united  in  marriage  with  Miss  Bertha 
Willkendorf,  a  native  of  California,  their  union  being  Messed  with 


360  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

three  children,  as  follows :  August,  Martha  Elisabeth  and  Bertha. 
The  youngest  child  died  in  infancy,  and  the  two  eldest  are  students 
in  the  public  school. 

A  stanch  Democrat,  having  at  all  times  supported  his  party 
to  the  best  of  his  ability,  Mr.  Hucke  is  a  citizen  of  highest  worth, 
and  as  an  advocate  of  Free  Thought  religiously,  maintains  a  deep 
interest  in  matters  relating  to  the  betterment  of  social  conditions. 


WATSON  M.  HUBERTS 

One  of  Yolo  county's  prosperous  and  progressive  fruit  ranch- 
ers is  W.  M.  Ruberts,  who  came  to  California  in  1879.  He  was 
born  in  La  Salle  county,  111.,  November  27,  1850,  and  while  a 
small  boy  accompanied  his  parents  to  McDonough  county,  in  the 
same  state,  where  he  lived  until  he  reached  the  age  of  twenty-eight 
years.  At  this  period  he  determined  to  seek  his  fortune  in  the  far 
west,  and  with  his  family  journeyed  forth,  settling  in  Woodland,- 
Cal.,  where  he  resided  about  a  year.  Later  he  removed  to  Rumsey, 
Capay  valley,  where  he  purchased  twenty  acres,  eight  of  which 
he  planted  to  grapes,  subsequently  setting  out  on  the  remainder 
apricots  and  pears.  He  now  has  only  eight  acres,  having  sold  off  all 
but  this  amount. 

Shortly  after  locating  on  this  land  the  Southern  Pacific  Rail- 
road Company  bought  the  upper  end  of  the  valley  and  proceeded  to 
improve  it,  building  a  station  and  subdividing  the  land  into  ten 
and  twenty  acre  tracts  which  they  planted  to  fruit.  Owing  to  the 
superior  shipping  facilities  thus  established,  the  value  of  the 
surrounding  land  increased  immensely  and  this  section  became  one 
of  the  leading  fruit  belts  of  the  state.  Not  the  least  to  profit  by 
the  change,  Mr.  Ruberts  prospered  rapidly,  and  in  one  season  he 
and  a  neighbor  shipped  an  entire  car  of  raisin  grapes. 

Mr.  Ruberts  was  married  in  LaHarpe,  Hancock  county.  111., 
in  1878  to  Miss  Hattie  Edgington,  a  native  of  Des  Moines,  Iowa. 
Four  children  were  born  to  them,  namely:  George,  a  machinist  at 
Willows;  C.  Arthur,  an  electrical  engineer  of  Bakersfield;  Charles 
Irvin,  a  contractor  of  Coalinga ;  and  Richard,  an  electrical  engineer 
employed  in  Yolo  county  and  residing  in  Rumsey.  Mr.  Ruberts  is 
a  stanch  Republican,  well  versed  in  the  political  issues  of  the  day, 
and  is  a  citizen  worthy  of  the  esteem  and  popularity  which  he 
enjoys. 


$&. 


dhtasi^f  .£.<&. 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  365 

WYATT  GODFREY  DUNCAN 

Sixty  years  or  more  have  brought  their  remarkable  series  of 
changes  to  Yolo  county  since  first  Mr.  Duncan  arrived  in  this  por- 
tion of  California  and  in  this  great  task  of  material  upbuilding 
he  has  borne  an  honorable  and  influential  part,  so  that  now  in  the 
afternoon  of  a  successful  and  busy  career  he  is  enabled  to  enjoy 
the  comforts  resultant  from  his  own  industry.  It  has  been  his  priv- 
ilege to  witness  much  of  the  development  of  this  commonwealth. 
Coming  hither  during  the  era  of  mining  excitement,  he  found  a 
cosmopolitan  population  few  of  whom  discerned  the  great  agri- 
cultural possibilities  of  the  land.  From  the  first  he  was  interested 
in  ranching  and  stock-raising.  The  results  of  his  intelligent 
labor  manifest  themselves  in  a  large  and  growing  prosperity 
and  in  the  kindly  regard  entertained  for  him  by  the  people  of  his 
community.  To  his  friends  here  as  well  as  in  the  east  he  is 
known  as  Doc,  a  name  first  given  him  by  other  members  of  the 
parental  family  and  afterward  adopted  by  acquaintances.  As  a 
child  he  displayed  a  great  regard  for  physicians  and  nothing 
pleased  him  more  than  to  play  he  was  a  doctor  riding  an  imag- 
inary horse  and  diagnosing  the  serious  illnesses  of  imaginary  pa- 
tients. In  that  way  the  nickname  came  to  be  used  which,  from 
being  considered  merely  a  joke,  rose  to  the  dignity  of  an  appella- 
tion of  affection  and  regard. 

The  founder  of  the  Duncan  family  in  America  was  Wyatt 
Duncan,  a  native  of  Scotland  and  for  many  years  a  planter  in 
Virginia,  but  eventually  a  pioneer  of  Missouri,  where  he  died  in 
Callaway  county  at  a  great  age.  Among  his  children  was  a  son, 
Judge  John  I.  Duncan,  who  was  born  in  Virginia  April  15,  1807, 
grew  to  manhood  at  the  old  homestead,  married  Margaret  Toler 
and  after  his  marriage  settled  in  the  western  part  of  the  ( >ld 
Dominion.  About  1833  he  took  his  family  to  Missouri  and  set- 
tled upon  raw  land  in  Callaway  county.  Later  he  returned  east  as 
far  as  Indiana  and  rented  land  in  Vigo  county,  but  not  being 
satisfied  he  went  back  to  Missouri,  where  he  bought  a  large  tract 
in  Barry  county.  The  title  by  which  he  was  known  came  through 
service  as  county  judge.  Early  in  life  he  advocated  Whig  doc- 
trines and  later  became  a  Democrat,  for  years  being  one  of  the 
leaders  of  that  party  in  his  community.  Consistent  throughout 
life  in  his  devotion  to  Christianity,  he  was  a  prominent  worker 
in  the  Baptist  Church  of  his  Missouri  neighborhood.  His  death 
occurred  January  18,  187n\  when  he  was  almost  sixty-nine  years 
of  age.  His  wife  was  born  in  Virginia  and  died  August  18,  1849, 
in  Missouri.  Her  father,  Godfrey  Toler,  came  to  the  United 
States  during  young  manhood  and   settled   in  Virginia,   where  he 


366  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

engaged  in  farming.  After  many  years  he  settled  among  the 
pioneer  farmers  of  Indiana.  Later  he  went  to  Barry  county,  Mo., 
and  there  he  passed  away  November  4,  1843,  at  an  advanced  age. 

There  were  twelve  children  in  the  family  of  Judge  Duncan. 
Five  of  the  number  are  still  living.  The  eldest  of  the  family, 
Wyatt  Godfrey,  was  born  in  Amherst  county,  Va.,  October  1, 
1828,  and  was  taken  to  Missouri  at  five  years  of  age,  later  went 
to  Indiana  with  the  family  and  then  returned  to  Missouri,  whence 
he  started  with  a  brother,  William,  to  California,  April  24,  1850. 
About  six  young  men  had  been  hired  by  Dr.  Lane  with  the 
understanding  that  he  was  to  defray  all  of  their  expenses  on  the 
trip  and  they  were  to  work  for  him  for  a  year  in  California.  The 
journey  was  made  in  wagons  drawn  by  oxen  and  mules.  The  expe- 
dition was  abundantly  supplied  with  provisions  for  one-half  year 
and  they  also  were  well  armed,  there  being  the  greatest  need  of 
protecting  themselves  against  possible  Indian  raids.  No  special 
incident  occurred  to  mar  the  pleasure  of  the  trip,  which  ended 
uneventfully  September  1,  1850,  at  the  mines  near  Eldorado. 
Pursuant  upon  agreement  the  young  men  began  to  work  for 
Dr.  Lane  and  during  the  winter  they  mined  in  gulches,  living  in 
rude  cabins  they  had  built  with  their  own  hands.  While  a  con- 
siderable period  yet  remained  to  be  worked  out,  Dr.  Lane  came 
to  the  mines  and  proposed  that  if  the  young  men  would  work  for 
him  on  a  ranch  for  two  months  he  would  free  them  from  any 
further  obligation  toward  him. 

Thus  it  was  that  Mr.  Duncan  came  to  Yolo  county  in  1851. 
The  Lane  ranch  of  six  hundred  and  forty  acres  stood  west  of 
the  present  site  of  Madison  and  he  helped  to  put  in  the  crops 
there,  also  aided  in  digging  a  ditch  around  the  land.  His  work 
ended,  he  began  mining  and  prospecting.  With  his  brother,  Wil- 
liam, he  came  to  Yolo  county  during  the  spring  of  1853  from  Yreka, 
Siskiyou  county.  For  a  year  he  was  employed  by  Dr.  Lane  on  a 
ranch  on  Cache  creek  and  later  he  became  the  doctor's  partner 
in  the  stock  business,  buying  one  thousand  head  of  Spanish  cattle 
from  Jack  Wilcox  on  the  Matt  Wolfskill  ranch  and  driving  them 
to  Mendocino  county.  A  year  later  the  young  rancher  returned 
to  Cache  creek,  dissolved  his  partnership  with  Dr.  Lane  and 
engaged  in  the  stock  industry  for  himself.  As  all  the  acreage 
adjacent  to  the  creek  was  grant  land  he  first  settled  on  the  plains. 
When  the  government  land  was  placed  on  sale  he  and  his  brother 
began  to  buy  heavily.  At  one  time  they  purchased  thirty-five 
hundred  acres  known  as  the  Canada  de  Capay  grant.  When 
finally  a  dissolution  of  their  partnership  was  made  Doc  Duncan 
had  about  six  thousand  acres  in  one  body.  About  one  thousand 
acres   of  level   farming   land   under   irrigation    furnished   excellent 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  367 

opportunities  for  the  cultivation  of  alfalfa.  Wheat  and  barley 
were  raised  in  enormous  quantities.  During  the  early  years  the 
wheat  was  cradled  according  to  the  old-fashioned  method  still 
in  vogue,  but  later  he  purchased  a  combined  harvester  propelled 
by  an  engine  and  utilized  the  most  modern  equipment  in  the  harv- 
esting and  threshing  of  the  grain.  For  years  he  engaged  exten- 
sively in  raising  horses,  mules,  cattle,  hogs  and  sheep.  Since  1904 
he  has  been  retired  from  arduous  ranch  activities,  his  son-in-law 
taking  his  place  as  manager  of  the  large  tract. 

The  marriage  of  Mr.  Duncan  took  place  March  13,  1879, 
in  Woodland,  this  state,  and  united  him  with  Miss  Mary  Franklin, 
who  was  born  and  reared  near  that  city.  Her  parents,  Benjamin 
and  Elvira  (Wright)  Franklin,  were  natives,  respectively,  of 
Tennessee  and  Kentucky,  and  the  latter  passed  away  while  yet  a 
young  woman.  The  father,  after  having  lived  for  some  years  in 
Barry  county,  Mo.,  crossed  the  plains  in  1850  in  the  party  of 
which  the  Duncan  brothers  were  members,  but  in  1852  he  returned 
to  Missouri  and  there  married  Miss  Wright.  In  his  next  trip 
across  the  plains  she  accompanied  him  and  her  death  occurred  in 
Yolo  county.  Later  he  married  again.  His  death  occurred  April 
1,  1893,  at  the  age  of  sixty-six  years.  From  the  time  of  his  second 
marriage  until  his  death  he  owned  and  occupied  a  farm  near 
Madison,  but  prior  thereto  he  had  lived  at  Woodland  and  had 
carried  on  a  blacksmith  and  wagon-shop.  Of  his  first  marriage 
there  were  four  children,  two  now  living.  Mrs.  Duncan,  who 
was  next  to  the  youngest  among  the  children,  received  a  public 
school  education,  supplemented  by  attendance  at  Hesperian  Col- 
lege and  in  that  way,  aided  by  habits  of  close  observation  and 
careful  reading,  she  has  acquired  a  broad  fund  of  information 
that  gives  her  culture  and  refinement.  With  her  husband  she 
holds  membership  in  the  Christian  Church  and  generously  supports 
all  of  its  missionary  and  educational  enterprises.  In  their  political 
views  both  were  reared  in  the  faith  of  the  old  Democracy  and  still 
adhere  to  the  tenets  of  that  party,  although  not  personally  in- 
terested in  polities.  Their  only  daughter,  Elvira  (hey,  is  the 
wife  of  J.  W.  Monroe,  of  Woodland,  and  the  only  son,  Wyatt  G., 
assists  in  looking  after  the  home  farm. 


EDWARD  REASBECK 

As  a  citizen  of  progressive  spirit  and  good  business  ability 
Mr.  Reasbeck  has  attained  both  prosperity  and  influence  during  his 
long  residence  in  Yolo   county,   his   many  friends   and   associates 


368  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

fully  appreciating  his  qualities  of  honor  and  manliness  and  his 
example  of  public  interest.  Born  November  3,  1842,  in  Pomerania, 
Prussia,  Mr.  Eeasbeck  was  educated  there  and  later  became  a 
railroad  employe.  After  fifteen  years  of  faithful  service  he  de- 
cided to  leave  his  native  land  and  cast  his  fortunes  in  America. 
He  landed  in  New  York  City  in  1882,  and  from  there  came  to 
Woodland,  Yolo  county.  Here  for  two  years  he  engaged  in  farm- 
ing and  fruit  raising,  and  then  removed  to  the  foothills  of  Butte 
county,  where  he  purchased  thirty  acres,  which  he  still  retains. 
In  1905  he  took  up  his  residence  in  Winters,  where  he  owns  one 
and  three-ninths  acres,  upon  which  is  located  his  present  com- 
fortable residence. 

In  1866  Mr.  Reasbeck  married  Miss  Helena  Neamann,  also  a 
native  of  Prussia,  and  to  their  union  two  children  were  born: 
William  Carl  Theodore,  a  fruit  grower  near  Winters,  and  Maria 
Wilhelmina  Johanna,  also  a  resident  of  Winters. 

Mr.  Reasbeck  is  a  stanch  Republican,  prompt  to  aid  all  public 
movements  of  worth,  and  as  an  active  member  of  the  Christian 
Church  of  Winters  takes  a  prominent  part  in  the  betterment  of 
social  conditions. 


MRS.  GERTRUDE  WURTH 

The  large  and  finely  improved  farm  which  Mrs.  AYurth  still 
owns  and  occupies  is  endeared  to  her  by  the  associations  of 
almost  one-half  century  of  toil  and  sacrifice.  Hither  she  came  as  a 
bride,  young,  patient  and  capable;  here  she  reared  her  large 
family,  carefully  guarding  the  health  of  each  and  wisely  training 
them  to  a  knowledge  of  the  duties  awaiting  them  in  life;  here  she 
endured  the  privations  of  the  frontier  and  the  hardships  incident 
to  isolation  from  railroads  and  cities;  and  here  she  watched  the 
gradual  development  of  the  country,  the  expansion  of  its  interests, 
the  growth  of  its  villages  and  the  enhancing  values  of  its  farms. 
As  she  reviews  the  history  of  the  agricultural  development  of 
Yolo  county  she  may  well  exclaim,  "All  of  which  I  saw  and  part  of 
which  I  was."  Her  wise  counsel  was  ever  ready  to  co-operate  with 
her  husband's  energy  and  she  gave  to  him  sympathy,  help  and 
encouragement.  With  busy  hands  she  labored  unceasingly  for 
the  welfare  of  her  large  family  and  at  the  same  time,  with  the 
burden  of  heavy  household  cares,  she  yet  found  the  time  to 
aid  in  charitable  measures  and  the  means  to  assist  the  poor 
and  needv. 


HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  373 

Born  in  Hesse-Cassel,  Kur-Hessen,  Germany,  Mrs.  Wnrth 
was  a  daughter  of  George  A.  and  Anna  M.  (Klotzburg)  Koch,  whom 
she  accompanied  across  the  ocean  in  a  sailer  and  landed  at  New 
York  after  a  voyage  of  nine  weeks.  From  New  York  they  came 
via  Panama  to  California  and  after  landing  at  San  Francisco  in 
1863  they  proceeded  to  Sntterville,  Sacramento  county,  where  the 
parents  died.  The  daughter  was  given  a  fair  education  in  the 
convent  at  Sacramento  and  in  that  city,  October  24,  1867,  became 
the  wife  of  John  Wurth,  a  German-American  citizen  of  sterling 
integrity  and  great  energy.  Born  near  Stuttgart,  Wurtemberg, 
Germany,  October  25,  1836,  he  was  reared  on  a  farm  and  in  young 
manhood  came  to  the  United  States,  spending  five  years  at  Aurora, 
N.  Y.,  as  a  day  laborer.  During  1859  he  started  with  an  expedition 
for  Pike's  Peak,  but  on  the  way  met  so  many  men  returning  dis- 
couraged and  with  tales  to  tell  of  troubles  of  all  kinds  that  he 
decided  to  push  on  to  California.  Arriving  here,  he  spent  a  few 
months  in  the  mines.  During  1860  he  came  to  Sacramento  and 
secured  employment  by  the  day.  Coming  to  Yolo  county  in  the 
fall  of  1861  he  located  a  claim  of  one  hundred  and  sixty  acres  five 
miles  northeast  of  Winters.  At  first  he  kept  "bachelor's  hall"  in 
a  little  cabin  on  the  farm,  but  in  1867  he  married  and  brought  his 
young  wife  to  the  ranch.  Together  they  worked  with  the  most 
unwearied  diligence.  Little  by  little  they  established  a  financial 
foothold.  With  a  wise  forethought  as  to  advancing  values  they 
purchased  adjoining  land  from  time  to  time.  The  raising  of  grain 
was  the  principal  occupation.  In  those  days  crops  were  large  and 
prices  almost  uniformly  -good,  so  that  they  were  able  to  pay  off 
their  indebtedness  and  educate  their  children.  When  Mr.  Wurth 
died  May  23,  1005,  he  left  an  estate  of  six  hundred  acres  and  since 
then  his  widow  has  added  to  the  ranch  until  now  she  owns  seven 
hundred  and  eighty-seven  acres  of  valuable  land.  While  she  con- 
tinues to  reside  at  the  old  homestead,  the  land  is  leased  to  tenants 
and  she  is  enjoying  a  deserved  respite  from  the  anxieties  and  labors 
of  a  busy  existence. 

In  politics  Mr.  Wurth  voted  with  the  Republican  party,  in 
religion  was  confirmed  in  the  Lutheran  faith  and  fraternally  held 
membership  with  the  Independent  Order  of  Odd  Fellows.  Educa- 
tional matters  interested  him  greatly.  In  the  building  up  of  the 
district  school  he  gave  of  his  time  and  means  and  for  fourteen 
years  he  served  as  its  trustee,  displaying  in  the  position  an 
untiring  zeal  in  behalf  of  the  school  and  a  constant  desire  to 
promote  its  standard  of  education.  His  wife  shared  his  devotion 
to  Republican  principles  and  is  in  hearty  sympathy  with  that 
party  platform.  As  early  as  1876  she  became  a  member  of  the 
Rebekah  Lodge  and  now  is  associated  with  the  Mendelssohn  Lodge 


372  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

of  Rebekahs  in  Winters,  belonging  also  to  tbe  Lodge  of  Pythian 
Sisters  in  the  same  town.  Eleven  children  were  born  of  her  mar- 
riage and  it  was  her  happy  fortune  to  live  to  see  them  all  settled 
in  homes  of  their  own  and  holding  positions  of  respect  in 
their  various  communities.  They  are  named  as  follows :  George  A., 
connected  with  the  Consolidated  Water  Company  of  Woodland; 
Celia,  wife  of  George  R.  Siclwell,  of  Winters;  Dora  R.,  who  mar- 
ried August  Brinck,  of  Winters;  Rosa  M.,  Mrs.  Adam  Beiser,  of 
San  Francisco;  John  Albert,  who  is  engaged  in  farming  near  Buck- 
eye; Charles  F.,  a  miller  in  Woodland;  Minnie  G.,  Mrs.  William 
F.  Russell,  of  Merritt;  Lydia  A.,  Mrs.  John  Hucke,  of  Wood- 
land; Kate  B.,  who  married  Lee  Shackelford  and  lives  at  Cedar- 
ville,  Modoc  county;  Ida  M.,  Mrs.  Homer  Cook,  of  Plainfield;  and 
Sadie,  wife  of  Adolph  Oeste,  a  resident  of  Davis,  Yolo  county. 


HON.  JOSEPH  CRAIG 

An  identification  with  the  new  world  dating  back  to  the  colonial 
era  indicates  that  the  pioneer  instinct  was  strong  in  the  early  Amer- 
ican representatives  of  the  Craig  family.  Unknown  regions  beyond 
the  confines  of  civilization  constantly  lured  them  from  the  peaceful 
abodes  of  progress.  Theirs  the  undimmed  vision  of  the  frontiers- 
man in  nature's  primeval  wild;  theirs  the  love  of  stream  and  forest 
with  the  gifts  they  brought  of  fish  and  game;  and  theirs  the  soli- 
tary way  through  life  far  from  the  crowded  haunts  of  men.  When 
later  generations  of  the  name  found  no  outlet  for  their  frontier  pre- 
dilections they  expressed  their  innate  tastes  in  a  love  for  the  open 
and  in  the  adoption  of  occupations  necessitating  outdoor  work.  An 
apparent  exception  to  this  rule  appears  in  the  forceful  activities  of 
Hon.  Joseph  Craig,  who  entered  upon  the  profession  of  the  law  and 
also  developed  patents  that  necessitated  the  erection  and  manage- 
ment of  a  foundry.  However,  those  who  for  years  have  enjoyed 
glimpses  into  the  attractive  characteristics  of  Mr.  Craig  have  dis- 
covered that  his  happiest  hours  are  those  spent  on  his  ranches,  in 
superintending  the  purchase  or  care  of  his  thoroughbred  Durham 
cattle,  in  planning  for  suitable  irrigation  facilities,  in  experiment- 
ing with  alfalfa  and  other  desired  crops  and  in  enjoying  all  the 
amenities  incident  to  pleasant  tasks  in  God's  great  out-of-doors. 

An  early  expansion  of  the  interests  of  Virginia  caused  many  of 
her  most  forceful,  aggressive  citizens  to  cross  the  mountains  and 
establish  farms  in  the  then  wilds  of  Kentucky.    Thus  the  Crai°-  fam 


HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  373 

ily  became  established  in  the  blue  grass  country.  Randolph  K. 
Craig  was  born  at  Versailles,  Woodford  comity,  I\v.,  and  in  1837 
married  Miss  Minerva  R.  Darneal,  a  native  of  the  same  village. 
Soon  afterward  they  sought  the  government  lands  of  Missouri  for 
the  purpose  of  undertaking  farm  work  and  they  were  numbered 
among  the  pioneers  of  Clinton  county,  later  removing  to  the  rich 
agricultural  regions  of  Clay  county,  in  the  same  state,  not  far  from 
the  now  flourishing  metropolis  of  Kansas  City,  a  place  at  that  time 
as  yet  unplatted  and  unnamed. 

When  news  came  of  the  discovery  of  gold  Randolph  R.  Craig 
made  immediate  preparations  for  a  trip  to  California  and  joined  a 
party  bound  for  the  gold  mines  in  1849.  A  safe  ending  to  a  peril- 
ous journey  was  followed  by  an  adventurous  career  in  the  mines  of 
Nevada  county,  where  he  met  with  some  success  as  a  miner.  With 
the  encouragement  suggested  by  the  run  of  good  luck  he  determined 
to  locate  permanently  in  California  and  therefore  in  1852  returned 
to  Missouri  via  the  Isthmus  of  Panama,  disposed  of  his  property 
there  and  returned  to  the  coast  accompanied  by  his  family,  whose 
youngest  member  was  a  son,  Joseph,  born  in  Clinton,  Mo.,  August 
14,  1849.  The  first  home  in  California  was  at  Nevada  City,  whence 
the  father  made  mining  expeditions  to  the  foothills  of  the  Sierras. 
In  the  fall  of  1869  he  established  a  residence  in  Oakland  and  in 
1878  removed  to  San  Francisco,  where  he  had  a  comfortable  home 
and  a  large  circle  of  friends.  Always,  however,  he  continued  to 
spend  much  of  his  time  at  the  mines  and  his  death  occurred  in  1883 
at  Auburn,  Placer  county,  when  he  was  sixty-six  years  of  age.  Mrs. 
Craig  attained  the  age  of  eighty-four  years.  They  were  the  parents 
of  twelve  children,  seven  of  whom  lived  to  maturity,  namely:  Ed- 
ward L.,  Walter  R.,  Lee  D.,  William  C,  Joseph,  Mrs".  Phoebe"  C.  Mc- 
Kinzie,  and  Mrs.  Elizabeth  M.  Doud. 

By  reason  of  his  residence  as  a  boy  in  communities  interested 
in  mining  Joseph  Craig  has  been  familiar  with  that  occupation  from 
his  earliest  recollections  and  his  inventive  mind  found  expression  in 
a  patent,  secured  in  1869,  on  a  hydraulic  monitor,  which  revolu- 
tionized the  entire  system  of  hydraulic  mining  and  proved  of  inesti- 
mable value  to  men  engaged  in  the  occupation.  To  establish  a  fac- 
tory for  the  manufacture  of  this  patent  he  built  a  foundry  and  ma- 
chine shop  at  Marysville,  where  the  Globe  and  Little  Giant  nozzle 
were  manufactured  for  years.  Eventually  the  plant  was  removed  to 
San  Francisco  and  somewhat  later  he  disposed  of  his  interests  in 
the  same.  Some  inventions  of  lesser  importance  were  also  covered 
by  patents,  among  which  was  a  combination  plow. 

Establishing  his  residence  in  San  Francisco  during  1872,  Mr. 
Craig  there  continued  the  study  of  law  which  he  hail  commenced  in 
Nevada  City.    After  he  had  completed  the  regular  course  of  reading 


374  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

with  M.  A.  Wheaton  of  San  Francisco,  lie  was  admitted  in  1876  to 
practice  before  the  supreme  court  of  California.  The  previous 
year,  as  the  nominee  of  the  Democratic  party,  he  had  been  elected 
to  represent  the  tenth  district  of  San  Francisco  in  the  state  senate. 
The  election  was  noteworthy  because  he  was  the  only  Democrat  ever 
chosen  for  the  senate  from  that  strong  Republican  district.  During 
this  time  he  was  a  member  of  the  firm  of  Marshall,  Smoot  &  Craig, 
attorneys,  of  San  Francisco.  During  1878  with  Hudson  Grant  he 
established  a  law  office  at  Woodland,  Yolo  county,  where  in  1883 
he  was  elected  district  attorney.  Later  on  he  was  associated  with 
N.  A.  Hawkins  in  the  practice  of  law.  Until  his  retirement  in  1892 
Mr.  Craig  held  high  rank  among  the  leading  attorneys  of  this  part 
of  California.  For  one  term,  dating  from  January  17,  1889,  be 
served  as  a  member  of  the  board  of  state  prison  directors. 

May  1,  1874,  in  Woodland,  Mr.  Craig  was  united  in  marriage 
with  Miss  Kate  Stephens,  born  on  the  old  Stephens  ranch  near  Mad- 
ison, Yolo  county,  the  only  child  of  the  late  John  D.  Stephens.  Five 
children  blessed  their  union,  namely.  Tilden  J.  and  Josephine  M., 
both  deceased;  John  S.,  cashier  of  the  Bank  of  Woodland;  Mary  A., 
Mrs.  George  Gray,  of  Madison,  and  Cassie  B.  In  addition  to  man- 
aging his  own  landed  estate  Mr.  Craig  has  superintended  the  large 
estate  inherited  by  bis  wife  from  her  father.  At  Highland  Springs, 
in  Lake  county,  be  built  a  modern  hotel  and  made  other  improve- 
ments, which  resulted  in  the  establishment  of  a  large  patronage  for 
the  resort.  During  1902,  associated  with  other  capitalists,  he  pur- 
chased and  consolidated  the  Adams,  Moore  and  Capay  irrigation 
canal  systems  and  water  rights  on  Cache  creek  and  incorporated  the 
Yolo  County  Consolidated  Water  Company,  of  which  he  has  been 
president  since  its  organization.  The  new  owners  purchased  adja- 
cent land  and  developed  the  entire  property.  At  Clear  lake  they  ac- 
quired the  right  to  build  a  dam  covering  sixty-five  square  miles  of 
water,  having  an  average  depth  of  five  feet.  The  canals  are  twenty 
feet  wide  at  the  bottom,  with  four  feet  of  water,  and  will  supply  all 
of  the  county  as  far  as  Black's  Station  on  the  north,  and  extending 
south  of  Davis  and  Winters,  thence  into  Solano  county  as  far  as 
Dixon.  The  general  irrigation  system  has  been  most  advantageous 
to  the  alfalfa  raisers  of  the  lands  appertaining  thereto  and  also  has 
been  helpful  to  all  property  owners. 

For  years  a  number  of  the  most  prominent  fraternities  have 
received  the  support  and  influence  of  Mr.  Craig,  his  interest  being 
peculiarly  strong  in  the  Masons  and  the  Odd  Fellows.  Besides  be- 
ing one  of  the  active  members  of  the  lodge  of  Odd  Fellows,  he  has 
identified  himself  with  the  encampment  and  has  been  an  honorary 
member  of  the  Rebekahs.  In  Masonry  he  has  risen  from  the  blue 
lodge  through  the  chapter  and  commandery  to  the  Scottish  Rite.    In 


y 


r^-*^?  -^zz^sf 


HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  377 

the  local  chapter  of  the  Eastern  Star  he  is  past  patron,  while  his 
wife  has  been  honored  with  the  offices  of  worthy  matron  and  is  past 
grand  treasurer  of  the  Grand  Chapter,  California  0.  E.  S.  Repre- 
senting the  state  of  California  she  has  served  as  grand  representa- 
tive of  Maryland  and  also  as  grand  representative  of  Kentucky. 
She  is  also  a  member  of  Rebekahs,  in  which  she  is  past  noble  grand. 
and  is  an  active  member  of  the  Christian  Church.  Mr.  Craig's  de- 
votion to  the  west  has  known  no  diminution  throughout  his  life  of  in- 
tense activity.  In  all  ways  he  is  a  typical  western  man,  displaying 
the  enthusiasm  and  progressive  spirit  so  noticeable  in  those  whose 
lives  have  been  given  to  the  upbuilding  of  the  great  region  of  the 
Pacific  coast. 


THORNTON  CRAIG,  M.  D. 

It  is  significant  of  the  stable  personal  qualities  possessed  by 
Dr.  Craig  that  he  has  passed  the  entire  period  of  his  professional 
practice  in  the  same  town.  Immediately  after  his  graduation  from 
one  of  the  most  noted  educational  institutions  of  the  new  world 
he  came  to  California  in  1876  and  opened  an  office  at  Capay,  since 
which  time  by  successful  practice  lie  has  risen  to  rank  among  the 
most  distinguished  physicians  not  only  of  Yolo  county,  but 
of  the  Sacramento  valley  itself.  The  quiet  but  prosperous 
village  that  was  the  scene  of  his  earliest  professional  ef- 
forts has  remained  his  home  through  all  these  years,  and 
from  it  he  has  answered  summons  from  every  part  of 
the  adjacent  territory.  In  the  early  period  of  his  residence  here 
he  made  his  trips  on  horseback  with  saddlebags,  but  later  adopted 
a  carriage  for  professional  use  and  more  recently  has  purchased 
an  automobile  as  offering  the  most  expeditious  mode  of  travel.  In 
the  efficient  discharge  of  his  professional  duties  he  has  gone  hither 
and  thither,  lias  had  to  cope  with  disease  in  every  form  and  has 
become  an  expert  in  diagnosis  as  well  as  in  the  treatment  of 
intricate  and  baffling  cases,  retaining  in  the  midst  of  all  professional 
anxieties  and  successes  the  simple  dignity,  companionable  disposi- 
tion and  large-hearted  kindly  spirit  characteristic  of  bis  younger 
years. 

The  Craig  lineage  is  traced  to  Scotland,  whence  James  Craig 
brought  his  family  to  the  new  world  and  settled  in  Ontario.  Canada. 
John,  a  son  of  James,  was  born  near  Glasgow,  Scotland,  but  from 
early  years  lived  on  a  farm  in  Glengarry,  Canada,  and  there  passed 


378  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

Ms  last  days.  In  young  manhood  he  had  married  Mary  Westley, 
who  was  born  in  Ontario,  of  English  and  Scotch  descent.  Their 
thirteen  children  inherited  sturdy  physiques  and  robust  constitu- 
tions. It  is  a  noteworthy  fact  that  there  was  not  a  death  in  the 
family  until  after  all  of  the  sons  had  entered  into  business  or  into 
the  professions.  The  sixth  in  order  of  birth  was  Thornton,  born 
January  2,  1845,  at  the  old  family  home  on  the  St.  Lawrence  river, 
at  Glenn  Walter,  Glengarry,  Canada.  His  earliest  recollections 
are  of  the  picturesque  scenery  of  the  river,  the  stern  and  rigorous 
winters  and  the  constant  battle  for  a  livelihood  from  the  farm. 
The  parents  were  ambitious  for  their  children  and  he  was  given 
excellent  educational  advantages,  being  sent  to  the  high  school  at 
Williams,  a  short  distance  down  the  St.  Lawrence  river.  After 
he  had  completed  the  studies  of  that  school  he  passed  successfully 
the  entrance  examination  into  McGill  University  at  Montreal, 
Quebec,  and  there  became  a  student  in  the  medical  department,  from 
which  in  1876  he  was  graduated  with  the  degree  of  M.D.C.M.  Hav- 
ing decided  to  seek  a  location  in  the  western  states,  he  came  to 
California  and  found  the  desired  opportunity  at  Capay.  During 
all  the  years  of  active  practice  he  has  found  leisure  to  keep  posted 
concerning  the  advancement  made  in  materia  medica.  Every 
development  that  experience  proves  to  be  efficacious  he  adopts  in 
his  practice  of  the  healing  art.  At  the  same  time  he  has  identified 
himself  with  the  county,  state  and  American  Medical  Associations. 

At  the  time  of  coming  to  the  west  Dr.  Craig  was  unmarried  and 
it  was  a  few  years  before  he  established  domestic  ties,  his  mar- 
riage uniting  him  with  Miss  Lizzie  Rhodes,  e.  young  lady  of  educa- 
tion and  culture,  a  native  daughter  of  the  state,  born  and  reared 
in  Yolo  county.  She  was  a  daughter  of  John  M.  Rhodes,  a  pioneer 
miller  of  Woodland  and  banker  of  Sacramento,  and  for  years  one 
of  the  most  influential  business  men  of  that  place.  Eventually  he 
removed  to  Lassen  county,  Cal.,  and  he  died  in  Reno,  Nev.,  August 
4,  1908.  Dr.  and  Mrs.  Craig  are  the  parents  of  three  sons,  who 
have  inherited  the  ability  of  their  parents  and  give  promise  of 
exceptional  future  success.  The  eldest,  John  M.,  was  graduated 
from  the  mining  engineering  department  of  the  University  of 
California  and  now  has  identification  with  occupative  interests 
at  Cananea  in  Old  Mexico.  The  second  son,  Thornton,  Jr.,  is  a 
member  of  the  class  of  1913,  dental  department,  University  of 
California,  and  the  youngest  son,  Charles,  is  a  student  in  the  Es- 
parto high  school.  The  family  maintain  a  warm  interest  in  move- 
ments for  educational  and  commercial  advancement  and  contribute 
to  philanthropic  and  religious  enterprises,  having  a  special  regard 
for  the  welfare  of  their  own  community.  The  doctor  was  reared  in 
the   Presbyterian   faith,    but     with    broad-minded    liberality    sees 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  379 

the  good  in  every  creed  that  aims  at  the  uplifting  of  humanity. 
Since  he  became  a  citizen  of  our  country  he  has  voted  with  the 
Republican  party.  Before  leaving  Ontario  he  was  made  a  Mason 
in  the  Ferrens  Point  Lodge  and  later  became  a  charter  member 
of  Landmark  Lodge  No.  253,  F.  &  A.  M.,  while  he  also  is  connected 
with  Woodland  Chapter,  R.  A.  M.,  and  Woodland  Commandery 
No.  19,  K.  T.  Besides  his  Masonic  connections  he  is  identified  with 
Capay  Lodge  No.  230,  I.  0.  0.  F.,  in  which  he  ranks  as  past  noble 
grand.  The  active  years  of  maturity  have  been  devoted  zealously  to 
medical  work.  His  ambition  has  been  concentrated  upon  his  chosen 
tasks  in  life.  However,  he  has  found  that  outside  interests  broaden 
rather  than  hamper  his  mental  faculties  and  therefore,  in  making 
property  investments,  he  has  sought  principally  interests  that  will 
take  him  into  the  open  and  thus  give  him  a  pleasant  relaxation 
from  his  practice.  Included  in  his  possessions  and  requiring  a 
portion  of  his  time  in  their  management  are  six  hundred  and  forty 
acres  in  the  Yolo  basin  and  a  valuable  orchard  and  vineyard  of 
fifty-five  acres  at  Capay,  besides  which  he  also  has  invested  in 
mines  in  Sonora,  Mexico. 


CARRINGTON  A.  SWETE 

Of  English  parentage  and  birth,  Mr.  Swete  was  born  in  Oxford 
March  21,  1873.  His  father,  Fanshaw  C.  B.  Swete,  was  a  graduate 
of  Dublin  University,  from  which  institution  he  first  received  the 
degree  of  A.  B.  and  later  that  of  A.  M.  He  was  a  clergyman  in 
the  Church  of  England.  The  grandfather,  John  B.  Swete,  was  the 
owner  of  Blatchford  Hall,  Netherexe,  Train  Hall,  Oxton  Hall  and 
other  estates.  He  married  Lady  Shafto,  who  passed  away  at 
Park  Place,  county  of  Devon.  The  father,  a  gentleman  of  means 
and  leisure,  resided  at  the  latter  place.  The  family  on  both  sides 
were  prominent  in  the  English  navy.  The  children  in  the  parental 
family  were  educated  at  the  Rossall  school  in  Lancashire.  From 
boyhood  Carrington  A.  Swete  made  many  trips  to  various  parts 
of  Chili  and  other  points  off  the  Horn,  where  the  winters,  which 
occur  in  July  and  August,  are  very  stormy  and  where  the  nights 
are  long  and  dark.  On  one  of  these  expeditions  Mr.  Swete  canie 
near  losing  his  life,  when  one  night  a  storm  came  on,  which  in- 
creased in  severity  as  the  hours  passed.  So  fearful  was  the  power 
of  the  wind  that  not  only  the  boats  but  the  wheel  house  as  well 
were  torn  away;  the  sea  raged  over  the  deck,  sweeping  before  it 
the    sailors,    whose    long   training   in    such    emergencies,    however. 


380  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

enabled  them  to  cling  with  almost  superhuman  power  to  various 
parts  of  the  ship.  In  the  midst  of  this  crisis  Mr.  Swete  was  thrown 
overboard,  but  succeeded  in  grasping  the  guard  rail,  to  which  he 
hung,  while  the  foaming  waves  dashed  over  him  and  the  voice  of 
the  tempest  thundered  in  his  ears.  A  few  moments,  hours  to  him, 
passed  ere  strong  hands  rescued  him,  shaken  but  safe,  from  his 
perilous  position.  Only  by  the  valiant  efforts  of  the  crew  did 
the  ship  weather  the  storm,  arriving  at  her  goal  crippled  but  with 
her  precious  cargo  intact.  For  four  years  Mr.  Swete  sailed  the 
ocean  in  trading  vessels,  and  the  life,  though  ofttimes  fraught  with 
grave  danger,  held  for  him  a  fascination  the  memory  of  which 
still  thrills  him. 

Responding  to  the  alluring  reports  that  drifted  from  America's 
great  west,  Mr.  Swete  came  in  1894  to  Bakersfleld,  Cal,  but  re- 
mained there  scarcely  three  months,  owing  to  his  disappointment 
in  the  situation.  From  there  he  came  to  the  Capay  valley,  where 
he  purchased  forty  acres  of  land,  thirty  of  which  he  planted  to 
almonds  and  pears.  Owing  to  the  eventful  career  which  he  had 
led  up  to  the  time  of  his  arrival  in  California,  he  found  life  some- 
what monotonous  during  the  next  few  years,  and  when,  in  1898, 
stories  of  the  discovery  of  gold  in  Alaska  came  to  his  ears  he  gladly 
seized  the  opportunity  to  join  a  party  bound  for  the  gold  fields, 
leaving  San  Francisco  on  a  two-mast  lumber  schooner  called  The 
Charles  Hanson,  manned  by  its  own  crew  and  captain.  Eight 
weeks  elapsed  from  the  beginning  of  the  journey  until  they  reached 
their  first  landing,  St.  Michaels,  whence  they  went  to  the  Oohnck 
river,  proceeding  overland  to  Nome,  a  distance  of  seven  hundred 
miles.  Their  sleds  were  drawn  by  the  strong  and  capable  dogs 
native  to  that  land,  and  all  fared  well  until  the  food  supplies  became 
exhausted,  when  they  were  forced  to  kill  their  faithful  animals  to 
sustain  life.  After  days  of  suffering  they  were  rescued  by  a 
passing  vessel,  the  kindness  of  whose  captain  and  crew  will  never  be 
forgotten  by  the  men  they  saved.  Later,  scurvy  developed  among 
the  sailors  and  misery  reigned  supreme,  men  dying  by  dozens.  Mr. 
Swete,  however,  remained  immune  and  when  the  vessel  reached 
Cape  Nome  he  found  at  its  height  the  excitement  occasioned  by  the 
discovery  of  the  precious  gold.  He  engaged  in  mining  on  the  beach 
and  was  successful  but  could  not  hold  the  twenty  acres,  as  it  was 
held  by  the  United  States  from  high  water  to  low  water.  In  the 
fall  of  1899  he  embarked  for  the  sunny  land  of  California,  bavin"' 
been  in  the  frigid  climate  of  Alaska  about  eighteen  months.  Upon 
the  return  trip,  typhoid  fever  appeared  among  the  passengers  and, 
as  before,  the  journey  was  made  in  horror,  two  men  becoming 
maniacs  and  had  to  be  dealt  with  accordingly. 

After  the  experience  above  related,  Mr.  Swete  determined  to 


2^>^^^^^/T 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  383 

remain  in  peace  upon  his  flourishing  fruit  ranch,  and  to  that  end 
proceeded  to  devote  his  entire  energy  and  interest  to  the  devel- 
opment of  his  property  and  the  comfort  of  his  family.  It  should 
be  mentioned  that  his  brother,  Shafto  Swete,  is  his  partner  in 
the  orchard.  A  machinist  by  trade,  he  also  came  to  Capay  valley 
in  1894.  In  1898  he  went  to  Dawson,  Alaska,  over  the  Chilcoot 
Pass,  and  after  the  exciting  experiences  of  one  year  returned 
home. 

Carrington  A.  Swete  was  married  in  Guinda  to  Miss  Agnes 
Boniface,  and  they  with  their  daughter,  Camilla,  are  active  mem- 
bers of  the  Congregational  Church.  Politically  Mr.  Swete  is  an 
independent  Republican.  Having  renounced  his  roving  life,  he  finds 
his  greatest  pleasure  in  his  home  and  in  all  things  that  pertain  to 
the  development  of  Yolo  county. 


LAWSON  BROTHERS 

Among  Yolo  county's  successful  ranchers  and  dairymen  none, 
perhaps,  are  better  known  or  more  highly  respected  than  the  Law- 
son  brothers,  Budd  and  Syl  by  name,  who  throughout  their  lives 
have  resided  in  that  section,  their  interests  at  present  being  cen- 
tered in  the  development  of  approximately  two  thousand  acre-  of 
land  in  the  vicinity  of  Woodland.  Born  on  Willow  Slough.  Yolo 
countv,  the  brothers  spent  their  youth  on  the  farm  of  their  parents, 
Samuel  and  Emma  (Wright)  Lawson,  who  were  born,  respectively. 
in  Sweden  and  England.  When  a  lad  of  eight  years  the  father  went 
to  sea,  shipping  on  English  vessels,  and  in  time  he  became  mate. 
On  one  of  his  voyages,  in  the  year  1868,  he  rounded  Cape  Horn 
and  landed  at  San  Francisco.  Pleased  with  the  outlook  he  de- 
termined to  make  his  future  home  in  the  Golden  State  and  made 
settlement  in  Yolo  county  seven  miles  southeast  of  Woodland. 
There  he  later  married  Emma  Wright,  who  had  come  overland 
from  Illinois  with  her  parents,  the  tedious  journey  behind  plodding 
oxen  coming  to  an  end  in  Yolo  county  in  November,  1851,  after 
which  Mr.  Wright  took  up  farming  and  became  a  factor  in  the 
development  of  this  section  of  country.  After  his  marriage  Samuel 
Lawson  located  on  a  quarter  section  of  land  on  Willow  Slough, 
where  he  carried  on  farming  successfully  until  death  ended  his 
labors  in  1896,  when  he  was  seventy-two  years  of  age.  His  wife 
survived  a  number  of  years,  passing  away  January  19,  1909,  at 
the  age  of  sixty-nine.  All  of  the  four  children  born  to  them  are 
living  and  are  named  as  follows:  Syl.  the  senior  member  of  the 


384  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

firm  of  Lawson  Brothers ;  Lena,  Mrs.  Strawbridge,  of  Woodland ; 
Emma,  Mrs.  Cunningham,  also  residing  in  the  old  home ;  and  Bndd. 
the  junior  member  of  the  firm. 

For  the  past  eighteen  years,  or  since  1894,  the  Lawson  Brothers 
have  been  in  partnership  in  a  farming  and  dairying  enterprise  that 
from  the  start  has  proved  a  paying  venture.  After  carrying  on 
the  home  place  for  a  time  they  rented  adjoining  land  on  which 
they  made  a  specialty  of  grain  raising,  having  at  one  time  about 
five  thousand  acres  under  cultivation.  Their  first  venture  on 
land  of  their  own  was  on  the  old  home  place,  which  they  had 
purchased  in  the  meantime,  as  well  as  one  hundred  and  sixty 
acres  of  land  adjoining,  all  of  which  they  put  in  grain.  Their 
holdings  were  further  increased  by  the  purchase  of  eighty  acres 
one  mile  west  of  Woodland,  this  land  being  devoted  to  raising 
alfalfa  to  supply  their  dairy  herd  and  not  for  market.  Besides 
the  land  mentioned  they  also  operate  on  lease  four  hundred  and 
eighty  acres  near  Knights  Landing  in  grain  and  alfalfa,  and 
fourteen  hundred  acres  on  Willow  slough,  the  latter  in  grain, 
and  they  harvest  their  great  crop  with  a  combined  harvester, 
propelled  by  a  caterpillar  engine.  The  flourishing  dairy  business 
of  which  the  brothers  are  now  the  proprietors  began  with  thirty 
cows  in  1903,  on  Willow  slough.  Encouraged  by  their  success,  the 
following  year  they  leased  the  old  Becket  ranch  of  one  hundred 
and  forty  acres  one-half  mile  west  of  Woodland  and  increased 
their  herd  to  about  two  hundred  cows  of  the  Holstein  and  Durham 
breed,  milking  on  an  average  of  one  hundred  and  twenty  cows.  A 
full-blooded  registered  Holstein  bull  is  at  the  head  of  the  herd. 
The  dairy  is  equipped  with  a  DeLaval  separator  run  by  electric 
power,  and  during  the  summer  season  all  of  the  cream  from  the 
ranch  is  shipped  to  Sacramento  and  sold  for  sweet  cream  to  the 
confectioners.  The  brothers  are  interested  in  the  Woodland  Co- 
operative Creamery  Company,  of  which  Syl  Lawson  is  vice- 
president,  as  well  as  a  director. 

The  Lawson  Brothers  are  also  engaged  in  raising  horses, 
mules,  sheep  and  hogs,  and  in  this  as  in  every  venture  that  they 
have  as  yet  undertaken  they  are  meeting  with  the  success  which 
their  tireless  efforts  deserve.  The  by-product  of  the  dairy,  the 
skimmed  milk,  is  used  for  fattening  the  hogs  for  the  market,  a 
venture  which  has  passed  the  experimental  stage,  for  there  are  no 
finer  Durock  Jersey  hogs  brought  to  the  market  in  Woodland 
than  those  from  the  Lawson  ranch,  all  of  which  have  been  fattened 
without  the  aid  of  grain.  Though  they  have  been  in  the  dairy  busi- 
ness only  a  few  years  the  Lawson  Brothers  have  already  risen 
to  the  front  rank  in  their  line  and  are  today  the  largest  dairymen 
in  Yolo  county.     They  are  also  large  buyers  and  sellers  of  sheep 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  385 

and  cattle  for  the  market,  this  extensive  business  also  having  grown 
from  a  modest  beginning. 

Syl  Lawson  was  married  in  Oakland  August  28,  1895,  to  Miss 
Carrie  Overacker,  who  was  born  in  Portland,  Mich.,  the  daughter 
of  Philander  and  Marcella  (Headley)  Overacker,  the  former 
born  in  Michigan  and  the  latter  in  Vermont.  The  mother  passed 
away  in  Michigan,  and  the  father  now  makes  his  home  with  his 
daughter,  Mrs.  Lawson.  She  is  a  graduate  of  the  state  normal 
at  San  Jose,  being  a  member  of  the  class  of  1892.  After  her 
graduation  she  taught  school  for  three  years.  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Syl 
Lawson  are  the  parents  of  four  children,  Howard,  Walter,  Emma 
and  Justus.  Mrs.  Lawson  is  a  member  of  the  Methodist  Episcopal 
Church  and  takes  an  active  interest  in  its  various  organizations. 
Mr.  Lawson  is  identified  with  the  Woodmen  of  the  World  and 
politically  he  is  a  Republican.  In  addition  to  the  partnership  in- 
terests already  mentioned,  Syl  Lawson.  was  for  five  years  asso- 
ciated with  the  Alameda  Beet  Company  as  superintendent.  On 
the  advent  of  the  company  in  Yolo  county  he  became  interested 
in  securing  beet  land  and  in  creating  an  interest  in  beet-raising 
among  the  farmers.  It  is  interesting  to  note  in  this  connection 
that  the  first  beets  were  hauled  to  the  railroad  in  sacks  and  dumped 
into  the  cars. 

Budd  Lawson  is  giving  his  attention  to  the  management  of 
their  agricultural  and  grain  growing  interests,  while  Syl  attends  to 
the  dairy  interests  of  the  firm.  The  former  is  clerk  of  the  board 
of  trustees  of  the  Willow  Slough  school  district,  having  held 
it  for  the  past  four  years.  He  is  a  member  of  the  Woodland 
Lodge  No.  Ill,  I.  0.  0.  P.,  towards  the  charities  of  which  he  is  a 
liberal  contributor. 

In  retrospection  the  Lawson  brothers  frequently  survey  the 
changes  that  have  taken  place  in  Yolo  county  since  they  were  boys. 
Then  the  country  was  in  its  original  state,  thickly  covered  with 
live  oak  trees,  and  Woodland  in  those  days  had  only  two  small 
stores  and  a  few  scattered  homes.  Loyal  to  the  beautiful  valley 
in  which  they  were  born,  and  which  they  have  assisted  materially 
in  developing,  their  opinion  is  unanimous  concerning  the  superior- 
ity of  this  section  over  the  many  localities  which  they  have  visited 
and  which  have  offered  most  attractive  inducements  to  the  home- 
seeker.  Progressive  and  public  spirited,  they  maintain  an  active 
interest  in  all  public  movements  of  worth  and  deservedly  rank 
among  the  most  influential  citizens  of  the  community.  They  may 
always  be  depended  upon  to  stand  up  for  the  right,  and  in  all  of 
their  dealings  they  have  strictly  adhered  to  the  teachings  of  the 
Golden  Rule. 


386  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

DAVID  WOLG-AMOTT 

We  of  the  present  generation  are  justly  proud  of  our  ances- 
tors of  the  last  decade,  whose  unremitting  labor  and  self-sacrifice 
laid  the  foundation  of  the  noble  and  progressive  civilization  that 
we  enjoy  today. 

David  Wolganiott,  of  German  descent,  inheriting  the  sturdy 
and  admirable  qualities  of  his  worthy  parents,  was  well  fitted  for 
the  role  of  a  California  pioneer.  He  was  born  on  his  father's 
farm  in  Guernsey  county,  Ohio,  February  9,  1838,  and  received 
his  education  in  the  local  schools,  early  giving  evidence  of  a  strong, 
manly  character. 

Upon  his  brother  Joseph's  emigration  to  California  in  1850 
David's  imagination  became  fired  with  a  keen  desire  to  take  a 
like  journey  and  make  for  himself  in  the  mysterious  west  a  name 
and  a  fortune  that  should  reflect  honor  upon  the  house  of  Wolga- 
niott. In  1859  at  the  age  of  twenty-one,  being  free  to  order  his 
life  according  to  his  desires,  he  accepted  the  opportunity  to  join 
a  party  of  five  hundred  and  eighty  people  westward  bound,  and, 
filled  with  the  high  hopes  of  youth,  he  left  the  scenes  of  his  boy- 
hood. The  wagons  were  drawn  by  bull  teams,  and  the  memory 
of  that  slow,  wonderful  journey  across  the  plains,  the  mingled 
hardships  and  compensations,  and  the  deep  sense  of  the  Creator's 
nearness,  David  Wolganiott  would  not  voluntarily  relinquish. 
His  destination  reached,  September  13,  1859,  he  joined  his  brother 
Joseph,  who  had  located  near  Woodland,  Cal.,  and  for  fifteen 
years  the  brothers  carried  on  the  affairs  of  the  ranch  in  partner- 
ship. 

In  1870  Mr.  Wolgamott  won  for  his  wife  Rose  M.  Dinsdale, 
a  native  of  Missouri,  whose  father  had  brought  his  family  to  Cali- 
fornia the  year  the  Civil  war  began.  Four  years  later,  believing 
that  more  money  could  be  made  by  dealing  in  sheep  than  by 
farming,  Mr.  Wolgamott  moved  to  the  foothills  of  Capay  valley 
and  engaged  in  sheep  raising,  gradually  adding  to  his  flock  until 
it  numbered  three  thousand.  In  1884  he  again  changed  his  resi- 
dence, locating  near  Healdsburg,  in  Sonoma  county,  where  he  con- 
tinued in  the  sheep  industry.  Steady  progress  rewarded  his  ef- 
forts and  in  1910  he  purchased  fifty  acres  of  the  finest  and  most 
productive  land  in  Yolo  county,  located  southeast  of  Woodland 
and  known  as  the  old  Demming  place,  where  he  now  resides. 
Without  irrigation  four  crops  of  alfalfa  are  raised  yearly  on  this 
land,  and  from  fifteen  acres  which  had  never  been  plowed  or 
harrowed  Mr.  Wolgamott  secured  as  volunteer  crops  three  hun- 
dreds sacks  of  barley  each  harvest  for  three  years. 

Three   sons  were  born  to   Mr.   and   Mrs.   Wolgamott,   as   fol- 


QiL/  ^J^Uy 


j^W*^    /&&&t*o>  eX^J^ 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  391 

lows:  Frank,  a  farmer  of  Fresno  county;  Charles,  who  resides 
near  Healdshurg;  and  Walter,  who  is  still  on  the  home  place. 
Integrity  and  honor  are  synonymous  with  the  name  of  Wolga- 
mott,  upon  which  the  sons  of  this  generation  bid  fair  to  cast  no 
shadow.  The  mother  of  these  children  died  in  Sonoma  county 
May  16,  1909,  at  the  age  of  fifty  years. 


JOHN  KEITHLY 

From  the  Atlantic  seaboard,  where  the  original  immigrant  to 
America  established  a  home,  the  Keithly  family  by  successive 
removals  became  transplanted  to  the  west  and  its  present  repre- 
sentatives in  California  are  associated  honorably  and  intimately 
with  many  enterprises  for  the  agricultural  upbuilding  and  com- 
mercial development  of  the  commonwealth.  The  member  of  the 
family  to  whose  worth  this  sketch  forms  a  sincere  tribute  was 
born  in  Harrison  county,  Ind.,  November  15,  1828,  and  entered  into 
eternity  in  1898  after  a  long  association  with  western  history.  In 
him  were  combined  the  elements  necessary  to  enduring  pioneer 
activities.  Sturdy  of  frame,  stalwart  of  physique,  optimistic  in 
temperament  and  sanguine  under  the  most  discouraging  outlook, 
his  physical  and  mental  attributes  were  those  of  the  frontiersman. 
Upon  no  shoulders  more  capable  than  his  could  fall  the  task  of 
promoting  pioneer  movements  and  laying  well  the  foundation  of 
a  great  and  wealthy  state,  whose  chief  cause  for  gratitude  is  the 
presence  of  early  settlers  resourceful  in  mind  and  patriotic  in 
spirit. 

Genealogical  records  show  that  Jacob  and  Sarah  (Roberts) 
Keithly,  natives  of  Kentucky,  became  pioneer  farmers  of  Indiana 
and  as  early  as  1837  removed  thence  to  Illinois,  settling  in 
McDonough  county  upon  a  large  tract  of  raw  land.  Ere  this  the 
son,  when  a  boy  of  eight  years,  had  ploughed  corn  on  the  Indiana 
farm  and  he  took  up  the  same  task  in  Illinois,  besides  doing  other 
work  more  fitted  for  older  boys  or  men.  There  was  a  large  family 
(ten  sons  and  two  daughters)  and  it  was  necessary  for  each  to 
aid  in  the  cultivation  of  the  land  or  the  care  of  the  home  to  the 
extent  of  his  or  her  ability.  When  the  children  started  out  in  the 
world  for  themselves  they  became  widely  scattered  and  some  came 
as  far  west  as  the  coast.  Their  reports  concerning  the  west  so 
enthused  their  father  that  in  L869  he  visited  California.  During 
1870  he  again  came  west,  this  time  buying  land  near  Santa  Rosa. 


392  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

but  in  a  short  time  he  sold  the  property.  Returning  to  Illinois 
in  1871,  the  next  year  he  removed  permanently  to  California  and 
purchased  a  ranch  near  Fulton,  Sonoma  county,  where  in  August 
of  1875  his  useful  existence  came  to  an  end. 

When  twenty-three  years  of  age,  in  1852  John  Keithly  crossed 
the  plains  in  a  "prairie  schooner"  and  at  the  expiration  of  six 
months  arrived  at  Placerville,  where  he  took  up  mining  pursuits. 
Later  he  worked  in  the  Santa  Clara  valley.  In  partnership  with 
his  brother,  William,  he  went  to  Redwood  City,  San  Mateo  county, 
and  took  a  contract  to  cut  timber,  at  which  work  they  made  $1160 
in  seven  months.  Going  to  Sacramento,  they  purchased  a  drove 
of  cattle  with  the  intention  of  returning  with  the  stock  to  Red- 
wood City,  but  a  favorable  offer  was  made  and  they  sold  the 
cattle  at  an  advance  of  $20  per  head  over  the  cost  to  them.  With 
the  returns  from  the  sale  they  bought  other  cattle.  That  herd  they 
took  to  Redwood  City  and  during  the  winter  engaged  in  teaming. 
Their  next  venture  took  them  to  Sacramento  and  from  there  they 
engaged  in  teaming  to  the  mines  at  Nevada  City.  A  large  sum 
of  money  resulted  from  their  energetic  labors  and  this  they  in- 
vested in  cattle,  but  after  a  few  years  they  sold  out.  Taking  up 
land  in  Solano  county,  they  became  interested  in  the  sheep  industry 
and  at  one  time  owned  a  flock  of  seven  thousand  head.  During 
1860  they  bought  one  thousand  acres  from  Henry  Conner  and 
engaged  in  raising  wheat. 

Upon  the  dissolution  of  the  partnership  between  the  brothers 
in  1865  John  Keithly  came  to  Yolo  county  and  purchased  eight 
hundred  and  forty  acres  near  Davis.  Later  he  acquired  a  tract 
of  six  hundred  and  forty  acres  in  another  part  of  the  county,  besides 
owning  three  hundred  and  twenty  acres  in  Solano  county.  The 
large  area  was  devoted  to  the  raising  of  grain  and  to  the  stock 
industry,  his  specialty  being  line  horses  and  mules.  As  a  rancher 
lie  carried  forward  his  work  upon  an  extensive  scale  and  met  with 
returns  gratifying  as  well  as  richly  merited.  For  twelve  years  after 
his  death  the  farm  was  managed  by  his  widow,  but  eventually  the 
property  was  divided  among  the  heirs  and  Mrs.  Keithly  then 
established  a  home  in  San  Francisco,  where  she  makes  her  home. 
Prior  to  her  marriage  in  1868  she  bore  the  name  of  Alicia  Reynolds. 
From  girlhood  she  has  lived  in  California,  Imt  Canada  is  her 
native  land.  The  former  marriage  of  Mr.  Keithly  had  united 
him  with  Miss  Maria  E.  Briggs,  who  was  born  in  Massachusetts 
and  died  in  Yolo  county  in  1866  one  year  after  their  union.  Of 
the  second  marriage  four  children  were  born,  George  F.  L.,  Wil- 
liam E.  (deceased),  James  K.  and  Estelle,  Mrs.  Simon  Errington. 
The  oldest  son  married  Miss  Sophia  Struve  and  has  two  children, 
Edwin   L.    and    Clarice.      The    second    son    not    only    conducted    a 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  393 

livery  stable  at  Davis,  but  also  assisted  his  mother  in  the  man- 
agement of  the  ranch  and  displayed  ability  in  both  lines  of  activity 
until  his  death,  October  4,  1899.  ' 

Mrs..  Keithly  was  the  daughter  of  Lawrence  and  Mary  (Koen) 
Reynolds,  wbo  brought  their  family  to  California  in  1856  via 
Panama.  Mr.  Reynolds  engaged  in  farming  near  Vacaville,  and 
there  he  died  at  the  age  of  fifty  years.  Mrs.  Reynolds  died  at  the 
age  of  eighty-one  years.  After  the  death  of  her  mother  Mrs. 
Keithly  purchased  the  old  home  of  her  parents  containing  three 
hundred  and  twenty  acres  four  miles  northeast  of  Vacaville.  This 
she  rents,  as  she  also  does  another  half  section  that  she  owns. 

Mrs.  Keithly  received  her  education  in  the  public  schools 
near  Vacaville  and  at  St.  Catherine's  convent  at  Benicia.  In  retro- 
spect she  looks  back  over  fifty  years  and  sees  broad  vacant  plains 
that  now  abound  in  productive  farms  and  orchards  and  beautiful 
homes. 


GEORGE  HAYES 

One  of  the  earliest  pioneers  of  Yolo  county,  having  been  iden- 
tified with  the  development  of  that  section  for  the  past  thirty-eight 
years,  Mr.  Hayes  fully  merits  the  esteem  and  prosperity  which  he 
enjoys  today,  his  name  being  synonymous  with  courage  and  honor. 
A  native  of  Illinois,  he  was  born  in  October,  1855,  near  St.  Louis, 
Mo.,  where  he  remained  with  his  parents  until  he  came  to  Yolo 
county.  Here  he  first  engaged  in  farming,  in  connection  with 
which  he  successfully  conducted  a  general  wood  business.  Subse- 
quently he  was  joined  by  his  father,  a  wheelwright  by  occupation. 

The  marriage  of  Mr.  Hayes  united  him  with  Miss  Elizabeth 
Jones,  and  to  their  union  the  following  children  were  born:  Leo 
George,  who  married  Miss  Ollie  Oollett;  Ollie,  who  is  the  wife  of 
Carl  Bicknell  and  the  mother  of  two  sons,  Melvin  and  Kenneth; 
Ora,  who  is  now  the  wife  of  George  Perry  of  Knight's  Landing 
and  who  has  one  son,  Norman;  T).  L.,  and  Leland  E. 

Mr.  Hayes'  holdings  aggregate  two  hundred  and  eighty  acres, 
fifty  of  which  are  devoted  to  alfalfa,  the  remainder  being  in 
barley,  which.,  in  1911,  produced  thirteen  sacks  per  acre.  He  is 
also  the  owner  of  eighteen  head  of  stock,  and  raises  lio.o-s  for  his 
own  use.  As  a  man  of  enterprise  and  exceptional  business  abil- 
ity, Mr.  Hayes  has  aided  materially  in  the  progress  of  the  section 
in  which  he  has  so  long  resided  and  anions  his  fellow  citizens  is 
regarded  with  warm  respect  and  admiration. 


394  HISTOEY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

J.   WESLEY    GALLUP 

Horticultural  enterprises  have  engaged  the  attention  of  Mr. 
Gallup  for  a  long  period  of  successful  activity  and  by  means  of 
his  skill  in  the  occupation,  as  well  as  his  persevering  industry,  he 
has  added  another  name  to  the  list  of  prosperous  fruit-growers 
in  the  county  and  has  furnished  additional  evidence  as  to  the 
adaptability  of  the  soil  to  such  pursuits.  Lying  on  the  route  of 
the  free  delivery  No.  2  out  from  Woodland  may  be  seen  his  at- 
tractive homestead  of  forty-seven  acres,  which,  together  with 
another  farm  of  twenty-seven  acres  entirely  given  over  to  the 
cultivation  of  grapes,  forms  a  possession  of  considerable  value  and 
gratifying  annual  returns.  A  specialty  is  made  of  seedless  raisin 
grapes  and  in  this  product  he  has  been  successful  to  an  unusual 
degree.  On  the  home  place,  in  addition  to  the  vineyard,  he  has 
a  great  variety  of  apricots,  plums,  prunes,  pears,  peaches,  almonds 
and  walnuts,  and  from  the  sale  of  these  varied  products  he  re- 
ceives an  income  of  considerable  dimensions,  worthily  won  through 
his  own  industry  and  perseverance,  supplemented  by  the  intelligent 
co-operation  of  his  wife. 

In  his  lineage  Mr.  Gallup  represents  a  colonial  family  of 
Connecticut.  His  father,  N.  S.  and  grandfather,  Peter  Gallup, 
were  natives  of  that  state.  The  former,  a  contractor  by  occupa- 
tion and  a  lifelong  resident  of  Connecticut,  married  Julia  A.  Gal- 
lup, daughter  of  Frank  Gallup.  In  a  very  early  day  her  brothers 
came  to  California  and  were  pioneer  freighters  out  of  Sacra- 
mento. Of  her  children  J.  Wesley,  the  eldest,  was  born  at  Ledyard, 
Conn.,  March  10,  1859.  Ellen  is  the  wife  of  Prof.  C.  L.  Bristol, 
an  eminent  educator  of  New  York  City.  Amos,  a  contractor  and 
builder,  makes  his  home  in  Connecticut,  where  also  resides  the 
only  other  member  of  the  family,  Mrs.  Cora  Turner,  a  widow. 
The  common  schools  of  Connecticut  gave  J.  Wesley  Gallup  fair 
advantages  and  on  the  home  farm  he  was  trained  to  habits  of 
industry  and  self-reliance.  Upon  starting  out  to  make  his  own 
way  in  the.  wo  rid  he  came  to  California  in  1883,  and  in  1885  settled 
in  Yolo  county,  where  he  has  since  resided  with  the  exception 
of  one  year  in  Sacramento  county  and  three  years  in  San  Fran- 
cisco. After  his  return  to  Yolo  county  in  1894  Mr.  Gallup  rented 
the  land  he  later  acquired  by  purchase,  first  buying  twenty-seven 
acres  and  afterward  becoming  the  owner  of  the  balance  of  the 
property.  Since  he  bought  the  land  he  has  rebuilt  and  remodeled 
the  house,  transforming  it  into  a  neat  and  attractive  country  home. 
The  beauty  of  the  residence  is  enhanced  by  the  shade  and  orna- 
mental trees  surrounding  the  buildings.  A  substantial  barn  and 
other   necessary  structures   add   to   the  value   of  the  place.      The 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  397 

present  condition  of  the  property  speaks  volumes  for  the  skill  and 
perseverance  of  the  owner,  who  began  in  horticultural  efforts 
without  means  and  through  his  own  exertions  has  accumulated  a 
valuable  tract.  It  has  been  his  good  fortune  to  enjoy  the  co- 
operation of  his  wife,  a  woman  of  intelligence  and  energy,  whom 
he  married  in  this  county  in  1896  and  who  was  formerly  Miss 
Madge  Godsil.  Mrs.  Gallup  was  born  at  Hong  Kong,  China, 
being  the  daughter  of  an  Englishman  who  for  years  served  as 
a  sea  captain  and  meanwhile  had  his  family  stationed  first  in 
China,  later  in  Australia  and  eventually  in  California.  Five 
children  comprise  the  family  of  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Gallup,  namely: 
Edward,  Harold,  Lyle,  Ellen  and  Katheryn.  In  fraternal  relations 
Mr.  Gallup  and  his  wife  are  identified  with  the  Woodland  Lodge  of 
Rebekahs  and  in  addition  he  is  a  prominent  worker  in  and  a 
past  noble  grand  of  the  Woodland  Lodge,  I.  0.  0.  F.  The  welfare 
of  the  order  has  been  promoted  through  his  wise  leadership  and 
he  has  been  active  in  enlarging  its  field  of  usefulness.  As  a  citizen 
he  favors  all  movements  for  the  general  good  and  has  been  par- 
ticularly interested  in  measures  for  the  enlargement  of  horticul- 
tural enterprises  in  the  county. 


CHARLES  S.  THOMAS 

The  activities  of  a  generation  of  patriotic  and  resourceful  citi- 
zens have  wrought  many  transformations  in  the  agricultural  aspect 
and  commercial  enterprises  of  Yolo  county  since  there  passed  from 
his  useful  toil  one  long  identified  with  its  progress  and  a  promoter 
of  its  early  business  development.  The  value  of  the  citizenship  of 
C.  S.  Thomas  during  the  years  of  his  pioneer  labors  can  scarcely  lie 
overestimated.  Coming  to  the  county  in  a  very  early  day,  he  dis- 
cerned its  possibilities  and  often  predicted  its  ultimate  prosperity 
and  wealth,  this,  too,  at  a  time  when  the  most  optimistic  spirit  but 
dimly  discerned  the  hidden  resources  of  the  region.  His  judgment 
was  keen,  his  loyalty  to  county  was  deep  and  his  contributions  of 
time  and  means  to  local  development  generous  and  cordial.  All  in 
all,  his  character  was  of  the  type  so  indispensable  to  the  evolution 
of  a  frontier  region  into  a  highly  civilized  community. 

The  changes  of  a  busy  existence  brought  Mr.  Thomas  to  a  point 
far  distant  from  his  birthplace  at  New  Haven,  Conn.,  and  into  sur- 
roundings  radically  different  from  those  familiar  to  his  boyhood. 
Born  in  1810,  he  was  still  quite  small  when  the  family  took  up  the 


398  HISTOBY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

journey  toward  the  west.  Finding  a  desirable  location  in  New  York 
state,  they  took  up  land  and  he  entered  upon  the  task  of  earning  a 
livelihood  as  a  tiller  of  the  soil.  It  followed  that  he  had  neither 
the  time  nor  the  opportunity  to  attend  school  and  the  broad  fund  of 
information  he  later  acquired  was  the  result  of  habits  of  close  ob- 
servation and  thoughtful  reading.  The  attaining  of  his  majority 
marked  another  change  in  his  environment,  for  he  then  became  a 
pioneer  of  Wisconsin  and  settled  among  the  frontiersmen  of  Green 
county,  where  for  one  term  he  served  as  county  sheriff. 

In  company  with  a  party  of  emigrants  Mr.  Thomas  crossed  the 
plains  to  California  during  the  summer  of  1853  and  after  his  arrival 
he  engaged  in  mining  at  Placerville.  The  year  1855  found  him  a 
pioneer  of  Yolo  county,  where  he  settled  at  Knight's  Landing  and 
embarked  in  business  pursuits.  For  a  long  period  he  held  rank 
among  the  leading  men  of  the  locality  and  his  general  store  was  a 
center  of  trade  for  the  pioneers  coming  from  every  direction.  His 
leading  occupation  was  that  of  grain  buyer  and  in  the  early  era  of 
the  settlement  the  farmers  were  accustomed  to  haul  their  grain  to 
his  elevator,  and  then  buy  at  his  store  such  necessities  as  they 
wished  to  take  back  home  with  them.  The  grain  was  hauled  to  town 
in  "prairie  schooners"  and  was  loaded  from  the  elevator  into 
barges,  which  conveyed  it  down  the  Sacramento  river  to  the  mar- 
kets. When  Mr.  Thomas  removed  from  Knight's  Landing  to  Wood- 
land in  1872  he  resumed  the  grain  business  and  until  his  death  ten 
years  later  he  bought  and  sold  grain  in  very  large  quantities.  For 
many  years  before  his  demise  he  had  the  inestimable  benefit  of  the 
co-operation  and  cheerful  counsel  of  his  capable  wife,  whom  he  had 
married  in  Monroe,  Wis.,  in  1848  and  who  was  Miss  Josephine 
Louisa  Wallace,  a  native  of  Galena,  111.  Mrs.  Thomas  survives  her 
husband  and  in  her  pleasant  home  at  No.  658  First  street,  Wood- 
land, surrounded  by  the  comforts  that  give  pleasure  to  age  and  min- 
istered to  by  children  and  friends,  she  passes  the  twilight  of  her  use- 
ful existence  in  quiet  contentment  and  finds  her  highest  happiness  in 
the  welfare  and  society  of  her  daughter,  Mrs.  Addie  E.  Baker,  and 
son,  Charles  F.  Thomas,  both  of  whom  are  living  in  Woodland. 


FEDELE   COSTA 

The  name  of  Costa  indicates  the  Italian  origin  of  the  family. 
Indeed  up  to  the  present  the  majority  of  the  members  remain  in  the 
land  of  their  ancestors,  although  a  number  have  sought  the  oppor- 
tunities offered  by  other  countries.  Among  those  who  have  found  in 


HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY  399 

the  new  world  advantages  not  possible  in  their  own  beautiful  Italy 
mention  belongs  to  Fedele  Costa,  a  native  of  Bioglio,  Novara,  born 
November  30,  1863.  The  fact  that  his  father,  Dominico  Costa,  was 
a  very  successful  contractor  and  builder  in  Italy  determined  his 
own  line  of  activities,  for  at  the  age  of  twelve  years  he  began  with 
his  father  to  learn  the  occupation  of  a  builder  and  soon  gained  a 
thorough  knowledge  of  the  occupation.  Meanwhile,  while  working 
at  the  trade  during  the  summer  months,  he  devoted  the  winters 
to  school  and  thus  acquired  a  fair  education  in  the  city  of  Tech- 
nique, where  he  completed  the  studies  of  the  grammar  grade.  Upon 
leaving  school  lie  began  to  give  his  entire  time  to  occupative 
labors  and  soon  became  known  as  a  skilled  workman  in  every 
branch  of  constructive  work.  From  a  position  as  a  clay  laborer 
he  rose  to  be  contractor  and  superintendent  for  large  building  firms 
in  Italy,  where  he  had  charge  of  the  construction  of  many  large  and 
important  buildings.  Before  leaving  his  native  country  he  had 
begun  to  take  contracts  of  his  own  and  these  he  filled  with  scrupu- 
lous exactness. 

Coming  to  the  United  States  and  to  California  during  1906 
Mr.  Costa  found  employment  at  his  trade  in  San  Francisco,  but 
after  a  brief  sojourn  in  the  metropolis  he  removed  to  Livermore, 
where  he  engaged  in  the  building  business  for  three  years.  From 
there  he  was  called  to  Auburn  and  was  the  architect  and  contractor 
for  the  erection  of  St.  Joseph's  Catholic  Church.  So  satisfactory 
was  his  work  on  that  beautiful  and  substantial  structure  that,  on  its 
completion,  the  building  committee  honored  him  with  valuable 
presents  and  also  gave  him  the  highest  testimonials  for  efficiency. 
The  skill  which  he  had  exercised  in  the  construction  of  that  church 
led  him  to  be  regarded  as  a  specialist  in  church  building  and 
brought  him  to  the  notice  of  the  committee  having  in  charge  the 
erection  of  the  Holy  Rosary  Roman  Catholic  Church  at  Woodland 
For  this  imposing  and  magnificent  edifice,  the  largest  and  finest 
house  of  worship  in  Yolo  county,  he  was  engaged  as  architect  as 
well  and  building  contractor.  The  duties  of  the  large  contract 
brought  him  to  Woodland  during  February  of  1912  and  here  he 
has  since  made  his  headquarters,  meantime  giving  his  attention 
to  the  building  business.  More  than  ordinary  success  has  come  to 
him  in  his  chosen  occupation,  every  department  of  which  he 
thoroughly  understands  and  with  every  phase  of  which  he  is  famil- 
iar. Eaving  devoted  himself  to  the  occupation  with  the  must  in- 
tense diligence,  he  lias  had  no  leisure  for  participation  in  the  public 
affairs  of  his  adopted  country,  nor  has  he  identified  himself  with  any 
order  excepting  the  Ancient  Order  of  Foresters.  In  this  organiza- 
tion he  has  been  interested  from  the  standpoint  of  an  active  mem 
bership  and  to  its  philanthropies  be  has  contributed  with  character- 
istic generosity. 


400  HISTORY  OF  YOLO  COUNTY 

ISAAC  J.  ELY 

From  an  early  period  in  the  colonization  of  the  new  world  the 
Ely  family  was  identified  with  its  agricultural  development  and 
several  successive  generations  lived  in  the  south,  the  earliest  repre- 
sentative coming  from  England  and  settling  in  Virginia.  Several 
members  of  the  Ely  family  fought  in  the  Revolutionary  war.  Dar- 
ing the  year  1819  Isaac  Ely,  a  Kentuckian  by  birth  and  education, 
Kicatcd  on  land  in  Missouri,  and  in  1823  brought  his  wife  and  chil- 
dren to  the  newer  regions  of  that  state,  taking  up  a  claim  in 
Ralls  county  in  the  midst  of  a  region  so  desolate  that  no  settlers 
other  than  Indians  had  invaded  the  lonely  precincts.  Out  of  the 
wilderness  he  carved  a  home  for  his  family,  one  of  whom,  Aaron  F., 
born  in  Kentucky  and  reared  in  Missouri,  married  Miss  Emily 
Utterbach,  a  native  of  Clay  county,  Mo.,  who  was  the  daughter 
of  George  Utterbach,  who  served  as  aide  to  General  Washington 
in  the  Revolutionary  war,  afterward  moving  to  Kentucky,  where 
he  married  Catheri